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Ryanair posts a 21% fall in Q1 profits

Press Release   •   Jul 29, 2013 09:40 BST

Ryanair today posted a 21 per cent fall in first-quarter profits to €78m (£67.3m), due to higher fuel costs and the timing of Easter.

Ryanair said the drop was expected, and it still expected to meet expectations for full year profit.

The budget airline said that average fares fell four per cent during the period, but revenue per passenger grew one per cent. Fuel costs grew by 6% in the period, the company said, and now account for 47% of total costs.

Ryanair also said that "ancillary revenues" generated by the likes of credit card fees and charges for reserved seating jumped 25 per cent to €357m, accounting for 27% of total revenues.

Due to Easter falling earlier than usual this year, it meant profit from the period was included in Ryanair's fourth quarter results rather than the first quarter.

Chief executive Michael O'Leary said its outlook remained "cautious" for the full year.

"Market conditions are tough with recession, austerity, high fuel costs, and excessive government taxes (most recently in Belgium) impacting air travel demand and yields," he said.

O'Leary said full-year passenger numbers are set to grow 3% to 81.5 million, but the group was maintaining its forecast for profits of between €570m and €600m.

Looking forward, he said: "We expect Q2 yields to rise despite last year's challenging (post-Olympic) comparables, although yields on close-in summer bookings have been slightly weaker in recent weeks due, we believe, to the heatwave in northern Europe.

In March, Ryanair placed an order with Boeing for 175 planes worth £10.3bn ($15.6bn) to be delivered between 2014 and 2018. The deal will increase its fleet by a third to 400 planes.

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