Ryanair forced to drop projections

Irish airline Ryanair has reported a disappointing number of bookings and warned markets that it may miss full-year targets.

A number of factors have come together to compound the problem for CEO Michael O'Leary, who over the last couple of years has managed to beat most expectations. The company’s latest statement has indicated that estimates will either come in at the bottom of the €570-€600 million range, or miss it altogether.

Forward bookings for September, October and November have dipped dramatically as major rivals have upped their game and created stiffer competition in the sector. Ryanair have also found that more fiscally prudent times have impacted on its yield-per-passenger, as inflight additions have been cut. The fluctuations of sterling in the currency markets have also negatively impacted the airline.

In an effort to rectify this situation, Ryanair has trimmed capacity from 81.5 million seats down to 81 million seats. They will also be embarking on an aggressive marketing campaign to regain market share for destinations such as the UK, Ireland, Spain and Scandinavia.

This disappointing news has seen the shares take a beating and, after the first hour of trading, shares are down 14%; almost £1 lower.

Ryanair Holdings chart

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