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Ryanair Reports Fourth Quarter Loss But Hints Fare Hike During Summer Season

Ryanair Reports Fourth Quarter Loss But Hints Fare Hike During Summer Season
A loss of 96 million euros ($107 million) for the final three months of 2021 was reported by Ryanair. However, the company expressed optimism that the capacity cuts by its competing airlines would help it to drive up prices during the peak summer season.
According to a company poll of experts, the outcome for the quarter was in line with a consensus projection of a loss of 101 million euros. In the same quarter of 2020, the airline lost 306 million euros. IN comparison, in the last three months of 2019, the company had recorded a profit of 88 million euros.
The Irish low-cost carrier, which is Europe's largest by passenger numbers, has maintained its loss prediction for the full fiscal year, which ends on March 31, at between 250 million and 450 million euros.
While there had been a "quite big bounce back" in bookings in recent weeks as fears over the Omicron model began to wane, the prognosis remained extremely uncertain, according to the airline's Chief Executive Michael O'Leary.
"While recent bookings have improved, following the easing of travel restrictions, the booking curve remains very late and close-in, so Q4 traffic requires significant price stimulation at lower prices," O'Leary said.
Its competitors, easyJet and Wizz have both predicted robust demand during summer vacations, although Wizz has warned that excess capacity could hurt profitability in the coming months.
In an interview with Reuters, Ryanair Chief Financial Officer Neil Sorahan said that the fact that so many competitors were slashing capacity compared to pre-Covid-19 levels meant "there may undoubtedly be upward pressure on rates."
He went on to say that if Ryanair did need to drop tickets to boost demand, it would be in a much better position to do so than its competitors because of its big fuel hedging position.
Ryanair has confirmed that it expects to fly just under 100 million passengers this fiscal year. Last week, O'Leary stated that he expects to carry 165 million people in the 12 months leading up to March.
Sorahan said that Ryanair is "nowhere close" to a new deal with planemaker Boeing on a new order for 737 jets.
Because of price discrepancies, the Irish airline abruptly stopped talks with the US plane maker over an order for 737 MAX 10 jets worth tens of billions of dollars in September but has stated that it continues in communication with Boeing, its leading supplier.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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