Irish no-frills carrier Ryanair has posted a quarterly loss as competition among European airlines has become fiercer. Management attributed the poor results to a sharp drop in fares meant to win over more passengers.
On Monday, the Irish low-budget airline Ryanair reported that it had flown itself into a net loss in the third quarter of its financial year.
The carrier announced that losses after taxation had amounted to 35.2 million euros ($47.5 million) in the three months to the end of December.
According to Ryanair, this was the worst performance in a traditionally weak third quarter since 2008, with the latest results contrasting, though, with a net profit of 18.1 million euros in the same period a year earlier.
"Our third-quarter loss of 35 million euros is in line with previous guidance and is entirely due to a 9 percent fall in average fares and weaker sterling," CEO Michael O'Leary said in a statement.
Discounted ticket prices had been introduced to boost passenger numbers, the chief executive added.
Following earlier profit warnings, Ryanair stuck to its earnings forecast for the current year, announcing that it would remain unchanged at 500-520 million euros.
hg/mkg (AFP, Reuters)