Airline profits go up in 3rd quarter of this fiscal: IATA

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Profits of airlines in most parts of the world in the third quarter of this financial year have gone up compared to the same period last year, indicating optimism in the global financial markets, IATA has said.

"Most regions experienced better financial performance in Q3, despite a weak global economy and relatively high fuel prices," International Air Transport Association (IATA) said in its Airlines Financial Monitor for November and December 2012. "This strong performance is attributable to the restructuring and consolidation efforts of airlines in the US, and cost-cutting measures to counter high fuel prices by European airlines," the latest study said.

Quoting global financial indexes, IATA said global airlines, including those from Asia, showed an upward trend since late September with European airlines' shares

experiencing the strongest rise, up 55 per cent.

"Asia Pacific airlines' shares also gained over the month, but prices have been largely subdued throughout 2012, hampered by weak air cargo demand," it said.

Jet fuel prices remained stable over the last two months, but the levels were still high and close to USD 130 per barrel, the IATA study said.

Air freight demand surged in November, while passenger volumes continued to rise steadily, stabilising passenger yields over the rates last year. While freight load factors improved in November, passenger loads were still close to record levels, it said.

The "most notable turnaround" was for European airlines, which reversed their earlier losses to record a 36 per cent increase in Q3 profits compared to a year ago. In the US, airlines saw profits increase by more than 75 per cent in Q3 on a year ago, the IATA study showed.

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