9 Jun 2012

Qantas shares in free fall

6:03 am on 9 June 2012

Qantas shares hit an all-time closing low on Friday, capping a dramatic week in which more than $A1 billion was wiped off the airline's market value.

Qantas shares have been falling since the airline warned on Tuesday that it was expecting a big drop in pre-tax profit.

On Friday, they dropped a further 8.5% to 97 Australian cents, the worst closing low since the airline floated in 1995.

Qantas shares were worth $A1.90 12 months ago, and peaked at $A5.91 peak in October 2007.

On Tuesday, the company said its full-year profit is forecast to be $A50 - $A100 million, some 91% below the $A552 million achieved in the previous year.

Its international division is forecast to lose more than $A450 million, more than double the $A216 million loss in the prior year.

Qantas has axed around 1000 jobs since February as part of a five-year restructure unveiled last year. Plans were recently announced to split its domestic and international businesses into separate companies