Oct 22, 2018

Opening Quote: Debs wants to take off, Ryanair profit grounded

As one City analyst quoted by the Mail on Sunday said: "You can't just walk away from 50 stores. You still have to pay the rent or pay off the leases. Can they afford to do that? Is there a rescue rights issue coming? Or, down the line, a rights issues combined with a Company Voluntary Agreement?". Had the staff of TV's Grace Brothers department store been going on holiday today, they would surely have flown Ryanair. Today Ryanair confirmed what it had told us three weeks ago: not enough people were flying on its Boeing 737s, so profit has fallen. As the City expected: Not quite as bad. On October 1, Ryanair said union members' strikes, flight cancellation compensation and the high price of oil would cap pre-tax profit at €1.2bn. What was said: Mr O'Leary said he could not "Rule out further capacity cuts or base closures in Ryanair if oil prices rise or airfares fall further." OQ verdict: These numbers confirm what the profit warning told us: Ryanair has transformed itself from a very low-cost airline to a high-cost airline.

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