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Europe's three leading
airline groups have announced strongly contrasting financial figures for the
second quarter of 2011.
IAG, the parent of British
Airways and Iberia, revealed an operating profit of €190 million, a significant
improvement on last year's ash-cloud-blighted loss of €71 million. Lufthansa
squeezed into the black with a €3 million profit versus a €171 million loss
from a year earlier, and Air France-KLM saw its losses widen to €145 million
from €132 million, despite an 8.7 percent revenue increase.
The companies each indicated
that the crises in Japan, the Middle East and North Africa depressed their
figures by around €100 million and pointed to steep increases in fuel costs.
IAG, for example, reported that its fuel expense jumped 35 percent year over
year. All three companies also are reviewing winter 2011 growth plans. Air
France-KLM reduced to 2.7 percent its planned capacity growth, down from the
previous plan of 5.1 percent.
IAG reported a major
improvement in its premium cabins, while Lufthansa said yields improved by 4.3
percent, two strong indications that average ticket prices in the corporate
market are rising. Within the Lufthansa Group, Lufthansa Passenger Airlines and
Swiss performed well, whereas Austrian Airlines and Bmi—the latter with a
particularly extensive network in the Middle East and North Africa—recorded