Ryanair announces share buyback at profits rise

Ryanair announces share buyback at profits rise

Ryanair has announced quarter three profits of €103 million, a 110 per cent increase on prior year. 

Traffic grew 20 per cent to 25 million over the period, as average fares fell one per cent to €40.

The low-cost Irish carrier also saw load factors rise five per cent to 93 per cent, while unit costs fell by five per cent.

Ryanair chief executive Michael O’Leary said: “We are pleased to report that our low fares policy delivered strong quarter three traffic and profit growth.

“Following a strong first half of quarter three, we noted weaker pricing and bookings immediately after the terrorist events in Paris and Brussels.

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“We reacted to this softness by running price promotions and discounted fares to stimulate double digit traffic growth.

Four new bases opened in quarter three - Berlin, Corfu, Gothenburg and Milan Malpensa – and enjoyed strong advance bookings and are performing well. 

At the same time Ryanair said it was planning to return €800m to its shareholders in a share buyback.

The company said by the end of the nine-month process, it will have returned €4 billion to shareholders over eight years.

Shares rose one per cent to €13.90 in the first minutes of trading this morning.