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Jet Airways pares losses

Mumbai, Feb. 7: Jet Airways (India) Ltd today reported a lower loss of Rs 267.89 crore during the October-December quarter, considered a peak season for the industry.

The country’s second-largest airline in terms of market share had posted a net loss of Rs 891.01 crore in the second quarter of this fiscal. During the third quarter of 2012-13, it had clocked a net profit of Rs 85 crore.

The airline said it had managed to cut losses during the third quarter on account of an improvement in passenger yields even as it was able to retain its market share.

According to the company, while domestic yields improved 20 per cent during the period compared with the previous three months, its market share continued to remain strong at 24.6 per cent.

At an operational level, the airline saw a growth of 4 per cent in passengers and a rise of 5 per cent in available seat kilometres. This led to the company posting a net income of Rs 4,229.41 crore compared with Rs 3,941.39 crore in the year-ago period.

While this is the fourth straight quarterly loss posted by the airline, it is largely on account of the challenging conditions faced by the aviation industry.

Even as airlines grapple with high fuel prices and increase in airport charges, the tough competition among the players has also had its impact on pricing.

During the quarter, Jet’s average gross revenue per passenger showed a decline of nearly 2 per cent in its domestic operations but rose 3.1 per cent in its international operations.

While fuel rates increased around 10.6 per cent over the same quarter last year, factors such as rupee depreciation also impacted its performance. The grounding of some planes impacted the quarter by nearly Rs 106 crore.

In November last year, Etihad invested Rs 2,057 crore in the airline for a 24 per cent stake. After the equity infusion, Jet said it had brought down its debt to Rs 10,895 crore in December 2013 from Rs 12,495 crore in September 2013. This reduction is expected to bring down its interest costs.

 
 
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