TUI profits fall on weak tourism results

TUI has reported a nine percent drop in profits for 2005, falling short of market forecasts. This was due to a weaker than expected performance in its tourism operations.Difficulties in the French tourism market and higher interest costs also affected Europe’s largest tourism firm.

The group reported full-year earnings before tax and goodwill amortisation of 485 million euros, down from 531 million a year ago.

Looking ahead TUI said group sales may rise to 22 billion euros this year on growth from tourism, as well as shipping.

The tourism operations are expected to contribute a total of 15 billion euros.

The group attributed the loss to a weak year in Western Europe, specifically in the French tourism sector.

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Riots across the country led to substantial declines at the end of 2005, in particular the highly profitable Christmas period.
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