A flying exit.
Shares in easyJet climbed 6 per cent in early trading after outgoing chief executive Carolyn McCall’s final set of results.
Although an easing in competitive pressures had been widely anticipated after the exit of Air Berlin, Alitalia and Monarch from the market, guidance on revenue per seat — a key industry metric — and lower cost forecasts than some analysts had anticipated helped lift the airline on Tuesday.
Investec said the results “put upward pressure” on its forecasts. Analyst Alex Paterson said in a note:
Guidance for FY18 is for slower capacity growth than we anticipated at 6% compared to our 7%, but for constant currency unit costs to fall by 2% compared to our -1.5%. Critically, guidance for revenue per seat in H1 is to rise by low to mid-single digits, benefiting from the timing of Easter and the exit of capacity from Monarch and Air Berlin. We look for a 2% decline over the full year and this looks too conservative given the H1 guidance, particularly as forward bookings are ahead of last year.
Shares in the carrier are now at their highest since August, at £13.40 a share, but are still well down from 2015 highs when they briefly topped £19.