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02 Feb 2021 | 08:05

Ryanair traffic slides 88% in January as Covid restrictions bite

(Sharecast News) - Budget airline Ryanair said on Tuesday that traffic slid 88% in January as it continues to be hit by Covid-related travel restrictions. Passenger numbers dropped to 1.3m from 10.8m in January 2020. On a rolling 12-month basis, traffic tumbled 72% to 42.6m.

The airline said it operated about 15% of its normal January schedule, with a 69% load factor.

Broker Peel Hunt said January traffic was "not quite as weak as expected".

"We estimated passenger volumes of 1.15m with a 67% load factor," it said. "We expect February and March to be weaker due to the worsening travel restrictions."

Peel maintained its 'sell' recommendation on the stock, saying it does not believe the shares are discounting the recovery risks, "which may include a slower easing of travel restrictions than expected and ongoing requirements for pre-departure PCR testing".

On Monday, Ryanair reported a slump in third-quarter revenues, as it forecast a near-€1bn annual loss for "the most challenging year" in its 35-year history.
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