WS Returns To Profit In Q3, But Fuel Costs Still Bite

Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw

WestJet Airlines Ltd has reported a quarterly profit that represented a big year-over-year decline, but managed to beat analysts’ estimates as higher ticket prices helped offset sharply rising fuel costs. 

The carrier reported a net profit of $45.9 million, compared to $135.9 million a year earlier.

The Calgary-based carrier said revenue per passenger mile -- an indication of how much the airline gets from each passenger -- rose almost 9% during the quarter. 

"We are pleased to return to profitability in the third quarter," Ed Sims, WestJet President and CEO.“We have achieved this result despite continued downward pressure from the dramatic increases in fuel price.” 

WestJet’s fuel costs jumped more than 30% year-over-year, taking operating expenses up 16% to C$1.18 billion. 

Year-to-date, WestJet has recorded net earnings of $62.3 million. The second quarter of this year saw the airline’s first quarterly loss in 14 years.

Bruce Parkinson

Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief

An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.

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