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Ryanair weathers Brexit fears - for now

Lower average ticket prices were offset by growth in traffic and lower unit costs, but management continue to be wary of the uncertainty surrounding the UK's exit from the EU

The Brexit fears voiced by Ryanair (RYA) management aren't reflected in the budget airline's full-year numbers - at least not yet. Although average fares were 13 per cent lower at €41 (£35.65) per flight, this was offset by 13 per cent growth in traffic to 120m passengers, giving an “industry leading” load factor of 94 per cent. Operating profits were 5 per cent up on the previous year-end at €1.53bn, helped along by an 11 per cent reduction in unit costs, although comparable earnings came up short due to a €318m gain in 2015-16 on the disposal of Ryanair's 29.8 per cent stake in Aer Lingus.

IC TIP: Hold at 17.99€

The airline has started to shift its strategy to focus on European routes after it reined in its expansion plans in the UK following the EU referendum. Over the year Ryanair launched 206 new routes and 10 new sites at primary airports on the continent, while its Polish chartered airline, Ryanair Sun, is set to start operating in summer 2018.

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