Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Oct 10, 2019 • 10:00 am ET

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Delta Air Lines, Inc. (NYSE:DAL) Q3 2019 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

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Q & A
Executive
Edward H. Bastian

we also had an incredibly volatile weather pattern this summer that gave us very limited recovery options. So the heightened load factor expectations, the fact that MAX was not out, the weather all created an environment that we've got to reinvest to make certain next year because I expect the share -- any share we picked up are going to retain going forward, we are better prepared to handle the volumes in 2020.

Analyst
Duane Pfennigwerth

Okay, thanks. And then just for my follow-up, I wanted to ask you maybe a longer-term question about South Florida. How do you think about the growth prospects for that market longer term and potential connecting opportunities with the LATAM partnership? Is this about getting a bigger presence in South Florida for Delta or is it about building out from Atlanta to point south. Thanks for taking the questions.

Executive
Glen Hauenstein

Thanks for the question, Duane. It's a little bit of both. I think if you think about improving the connectivity to the existing LATAM infrastructure in South Florida, there is a little bit we probably have to add to replace some of the flow that's existing today on American. But it's not -- we're not creating a new hub. We're not creating a new gaint connecting complex. We're doing selective ads. So think of it -- if you think about Miami as a hub and you think about our size in Dallas or Denver or Chicago, probably looks a lot more like that to make sure we have key feeds that will go over Miami and then really work with LATAM once we get ATI to continue to develop Atlanta and our other US gateways as the primary connecting points for the South America traffic. So I think we have a pretty good plan that takes the best of both, best connecting complexes in the US, and best service in the local markets. And I think that's going to be a great platform for growth moving forward.

Analyst
Duane Pfennigwerth

Thank you.

Operator
Operator

We will now move to the next question. And that will come from Helane Becker with Cowen.

Analyst
Helane Becker

Thanks, operator. Hi, everybody, and thank you very much for the time. So I think this might be a question for Paul. As I look at those extra actuarial assumptions you changed, you mentioned that it doesn't flow through to next year. But I think you're also spending some money to bring your pension plans into closer [Phonetic] funded status. So I was wondering if it's possible for you to give us an update on that?

Executive
Paul Jacobson

Good morning, Helane. Those two issues are somewhat unrelated. The actuarial changes relate to the long-term disability program and this is actuarial tables that are updated every few years, and we'd seen a little bit of an increase in trend. So we have to mark up that liability one time. It hits that P&L and that's why it's not expected to repeat this year -- next year.

As to the pension, we continue to strive to