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Summer camp fosters racial reconciliation through diverse community, Christianity A New Website Tracks Broken McFlurry Machines, Because Weve All Been Heartbroken Before Japanese Airline ANA Forecasts Its Biggest Ever Loss

(Bloomberg) -- ANA Holdings Inc. forecast its biggest-ever operating loss of 505 billion yen ($4.

8 billion) for the fiscal year through March 2021, the latest airline to face an existential threat to its business due to the pandemic.

The Japanese carrier unveiled a restructuring plan that calls for:

A newly branded low-cost carrier in addition to Peach, the budget airline already operated by ANA.150 billion yen in cost reductions this year and 250 billion yen the following fiscal period, by cutting procurement, office rents and other activities.The temporary transfer of hundreds of employees to other companies; 100 by the end of this year, and 400 by spring.Retiring or halting orders on a total of 33 aircraft, to bring the group’s fleet down to 276 planes.400 billion yen in subordinated loans to bolster finances. © Bloomberg Operations at Haneda Airport Ahead of ANA and JAL Earnings

ANA’s self check-in counters at Haneda Airport on Sunday.

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Photographer: Kentaro Takahashi/Bloomberg

The outlook issued by ANA calls for a wider full-year loss than the 376 billion yen analysts were projecting on average, according to estimates compiled by Bloomberg. ANA also forecast 740 billion yen in revenue for the fiscal year through March, compared with analysts’ average prediction for 926 billion yen.

The $838 billion global airline industry is set to see revenue slashed by half this year, with carriers cutting jobs and securing funding to ride out the crisis. ANA, Japan’s largest carrier, as well as rival Japan Airlines Co. are suffering from a steep drop in domestic and international passenger traffic. Overseas visitors to Japan fell 99.4% in September from a year earlier as the country largely kept its borders shut.

Bloomberg Intelligence analyst James Teo said the cost management plan, especially the downsizing of the group’s fleet of aircraft, was a positive step.

“This is the main driver that will help ANA save 250 billion yen in fiscal 2021 alone based on their guidance,” Teo said. “I am less optimistic about their third brand and proposed platform business, as these could require investment and thus now may not be the best time to do these, although they could be good plans to have for the longer term.”

ANA shares fell 3.2% before the results and restructuring plan were released. The stock is down 37% this year. Japan Airlines is set to report results on Friday.

Funding Support

ANA is set to receive subordinated loans from five lenders, including Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Mizuho Financial Group and the government-backed Development Bank of Japan. Nikkei reported last month that ANA was considering raising 200 billion yen via a public share offering. Separately, Japan Airlines is seeking to raise about 200 billion to 300 billion yen in subordinated loans, the Kyodo news agency reported earlier this week.

Subordinated loans are usually given to debt-heavy or financially weak borrowers to bolster their financial health, because credit rating companies count part of such loans as capital, helping the businesses enhance their credit status. For lenders, they are riskier than straight loans but typically carry higher interest rates.

“Both JAL and ANA hold enough liquidity to last at least through this fiscal year,” Teo said.

For the latest quarter, ANA reported an operating loss of 122 billion yen, compared with the average estimate for a 115 billion yen loss, on revenue of 170 billion yen.

“The results in the first half of the year were very severe,” ANA President Shinya Katanozaka said at a news conference. He vowed to return the airline to profitability in the next fiscal year.

Japan, which delayed its plan to hold the Olympics this summer for a year, had prepared for a massive tourism boost, building hotels and redeveloping urban areas. But global passenger traffic won’t return to pre-pandemic levels until 2024, according to the International Air Transport Association.

The Go To campaign aimed at supporting domestic travel has helped but local demand is far from fully recovered. ANA and Japan Airlines are both forecasting domestic passengers to drop by about 50% this month. Katanozaka said he expects domestic travel to recover to pre-pandemic levels around the end of the year, thanks to the campaign.

Katanozaka said he doesn’t expect ANA to require public funding like Japan Airlines, which filed for bankruptcy protection a decade ago and recovered after receiving a government bailout.

(Updates with details of restructuring plan.)

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The Biggest Disclosures In Michael Flynns Case

  • Michael Flynn’s decision in January to withdraw his guilty plea in the special counsel’s investigation set into motion a series of disclosures that cast new light on the FBI investigation of the retired Army general. 
  • President Donald Trump pardoned Flynn on Wednesday, asserting that the FBI should have never investigated his former national security adviser. 
  • In the lead up to the pardon, the FBI and Justice Department turned over documents that showed that the lead FBI agent on the Flynn probe questioned the legitimacy of the investigation. 
  • James Comey told Congress that he was uncertain whether Flynn lied in a White House interview that eventually led to his plea deal.  

Michael Flynn’s decision earlier this year to withdraw from a plea deal he struck with the special counsel’s office set into motion a series of unprecedented FBI and Justice Department disclosures that has culminated in a presidential pardon for the retired Army general.

President Donald Trump issued a “full pardon” for Flynn on Wednesday. The White House issued a statement asserting that Flynn “should never have been prosecuted.”

Flynn pleaded guilty on Dec. 1, 2017 to making false statements to the FBI during an interview at the White House on Jan. 24, 2017, regarding a phone call he had a month earlier with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak.

After a series of delays in his case, Flynn made moves earlier this year to withdraw from his plea deal, saying in a court filing on Jan. 29 that did not intentionally lie to the FBI. (RELATED: Trump Pardons Michael Flynn)

Flynn said he pleaded guilty due to pressure he faced from the special counsel’s office to cooperate in the Russia probe.

Following Flynn’s about-face, Attorney General William Barr ordered a review of Flynn’s case.

He appointed Jeffrey Jensen, the U.S. attorney in St. Louis, to review the Justice Department and FBI’s handling of Flynn-related documents. On May 7, the Justice Department filed a motion to withdraw charges against Flynn, citing evidence that prosecutors had withheld from Flynn’s lawyers.

In a series of court filings, Jensen produced previously withheld documents that detailed FBI and DOJ deliberations about the Flynn case. The documents indicated that FBI officials were not certain whether Flynn intentionally lied to investigators about his contacts with Kislyak.

Other documents showed FBI officials strategizing how to approach the White House interview with Flynn that yielded his guilty plea.

Flynn’s lawyers and defenders have said the evidence shows he did not lie to the FBI. His critics have denied that the belated disclosures have exonerated him, or that he deserves a pardon.

Here are the most significant disclosures in Flynn’s case.

FBI memo closing counterintelligence investigation of Flynn

On Jan. 4, 2017, FBI special agent William Barnett, the lead investigator on a counterintelligence investigation of Flynn, issued a memorandum suggesting that the counterintelligence investigation against Flynn be closed.

The FBI had investigated Flynn and three other Trump advisers since August 2016 on suspicions that they had conspired with Russia to influence the 2016 election.

Barnett wrote that a review of intelligence community databases and sources “did not yield any information” to suggest that Flynn was a secret Russian agent.

US President-elect Donald Trump (L) stands with Trump National Security Adviser Lt. General Michael Flynn (R) at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida, where he is holding meetings on December 21, 2016. (JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)

The investigation against Flynn remained open, though it shifted to a criminal investigation.

Peter Strzok, who served as deputy chief of FBI counterintelligence, intervened to keep the Flynn investigation going after the bureau obtained a transcript of Flynn’s calls days earlier with Kislyak.

Other FBI documents show that agents began discussing whether Flynn’s calls violated the Logan Act, an obscure law that prohibits U.S. citizens from negotiating with foreign governments on behalf of the U.S.

Strzok would conduct the White House interview with Flynn at the center of his case.

Official questioned goal of Flynn interview

FBI officials huddled before the White House interview with Flynn to discuss the goals of the meeting, according to a memo discovered by Jensen.

Bill Priestap, the chief of FBI counterintelligence, wrote in notes just before the interview with Flynn that he wondered whether the FBI’s goal with the White House interview was to “get [Flynn] to lie,” either in order to get him fired or prosecuted.

“What is our goal? Truth/Admission or to get him to lie so we can prosecute him or get him fired?” wrote Priestap.

Flynn’s lawyer, Sidney Powell, wrote in a court filing that disclosed the notes that they showed that the FBI “pre-planned a deliberate attack” on Flynn.

McCabe notes of his phone call with Flynn

Andrew McCabe, the former FBI deputy director, took notes of his phone call with Flynn setting up the fateful White House interview. The documents were turned over to Flynn’s lawyers in December 2018, well before Jensen began his review of the case.

McCabe wrote in the notes that he suggested to Flynn that lawyers not be present during the White House interview.

“I explained that I thought the quickest way to get this done was to have a conversation between [General Flynn] and the agents only,” McCabe wrote.

Flynn’s defenders have seized on the disclosure as evidence that the FBI targeted Flynn and hoped to get him to lie.

In a May 8, 2020 interview, Barr, the attorney general, accused the Comey-McCabe FBI of setting a “perjury trap” for Flynn.

James Comey was unsure whether Flynn lied

The investigation into whether Flynn lied to the FBI was never an open-and-shut case.

On March 2, 2017, then-FBI Director James Comey told the House Intelligence Committee that he and others at the FBI were not certain whether Flynn lied during his White House interview.

“Do you believe that Mr. Flynn lied?” Comey was asked in the interview.

“I don’t know,” Comey replied. “I think there is an argument to be made that he lied. It is a close one.”

Lead Flynn investigator cast doubt on counterintelligence probe

Perhaps the most significant blow to the FBI’s investigation of Flynn came from Barnett, the special agent who led probe of the retired general.

Barnett told Jensen, the U.S. attorney, in a Sept. 17 interview that he “did not understand the point of the investigation.”

Barnett also said that the special counsel’s team had a “get Trump” attitude.

In private FBI messages turned over the Jensen, Barnett wrote to a colleague on Nov. 8, 2016, that he was “so glad” that FBI brass had ordered the closure of the investigation into Flynn.

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