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SAS profits triple in second quarter

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12:38 CEST+02:00
Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) reported a threefold surge in second quarter net earnings to 449 million kronor (53.6 million euros, 66 million dollars) from 147 million kronor in the same period last year.

The performance exceeded expectations, as analysts polled by the research group SME Direkt forecast second quarter net profit of 361 million kronor.

Operating profit increased four-fold to 949 million kronor from 251 million, with operating margins rising to 5.9 percent from 1.7 percent.

For the first half the company had an operating loss of 99 million kronor compared with a loss of 1.006 billion a year earlier.

Sales grew by 874 million kronor to 16.017 billion.

SAS attributed the improved results to cost savings, ticket price increases and fuel hedges, which more than offset increased fuel costs.

"Despite substantial increases in oil prices during the first half of the year and an increase in costs for the SAS Group of approximately 700 million kronor, the Group was able to compensate for this through continued cost efficiency enhancements, yield control and fuel hedges," it said.

SAS said the airline market was still characterized by overcapacity and price pressure but added that it was sticking to its future targets.

"Developments during the quarter and in July, as well as expectations for the months ahead, do not indicate any significant variances from plan," the carrier said.

AFP

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