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Easyjet soars on buoyant quarter


SHARES in Easyjet soared yesterday after the airline reported a 16.7pc surge in revenue to £763m (€910.4m) in the quarter to the end of December.

While the carrier benefited from the strength of the Swiss franc, it also boosted revenue per seat during the period by over 9pc as more business travellers opted to fly with the company. Competitor capacity was also stable, helping to shore up seat prices.

The strong performance also buoyed Ryanair. Its stock was whipped up in the positive sentiment, sending it 3pc higher by day's end to almost €4.13. Ryanair releases third-quarter results on Monday.

Easyjet chief executive Carolyn McCall said that the airline is now likely to contain pre-tax losses to between £140m (€167m) and £160m in the first half of the current financial year, compared to a pre-tax loss of £153m in the first half of its previous financial year. Analysts had been pencilled in a much higher loss for the current six-month period.

The airline added that about 70pc of its available seats in the first half of the year are already booked. It also now expects to recover most of the £100m increase in its first-half fuel bill.

Irish Independent