Qantas profit dives 25 per cent

A Qantas 737-838 in Adelaide.

QANTAS has suffered a 25 per cent drop in first-half net profit to $515 million, hurt largely by $137 million of staff lay-off and restructuring costs.

Underlying profit before tax — the airline’s preferred financial measure — fell 7.5 per cent to $852 million for the six months to December 31, but that is still ahead of the group’s guidance range of $800 million to $850 million and compares with a record $921 million over the same period last year.

Qantas declared a 50 per cent franked interim dividend of 7 cents a share. It paid no interim dividend in 2016.

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