JAL declares quarterly profit


TOKYO, 1 August 2017: Japan Airlines (JAL) on Monday reported a jump in quarterly net profit thanks to brisk sales at home and overseas, and revised its full-year forecast upward.

JAL, once a symbol of Japan’s rise from the ashes of defeat in World War II as it ferried the country’s newly rich tourists around the world, received a government bailout after a high-profile bankruptcy restructuring in 2010.

After slashing routes and cutting costs, the carrier relisted on the Tokyo bourse two years later and has continued a steady ascent.

JAL said its net profit rose 32.9% to 19.6 billion yen (USD177 million) for the three months to June.

Revenue for the April-June period increased 5.9% to 314.8 billion yen.

“In international passenger operations, inbound demand from overseas remained robust and outbound demand has been buoyant, resulting in higher load factors than the year before,” JAL said in a statement.

The company upgraded its full-year forecast, projecting 108 billion yen in net profit for the fiscal year to March 2018, up from 100 billion yen forecast earlier.

Annual sales are now seen at 1.348 trillion yen compared with 1.339 trillion yen forecast before.

“Full-year consolidated revenues are expected to increase … as international passenger unit revenue, domestic passenger demand, and cargo demand outperformed their respective forecasts for the first quarter,” it said.

The upward revision was also due to “lower-than-expected fuel prices during the reporting period and continuous efforts to increase cost-effectiveness throughout the year”, JAL added.

Rival carrier All Nippon Airways is scheduled to announce its quarterly earnings on Wednesday.

“International operations in the industry are expected to remain strong for now due to an increase in landing slots… ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” said Hiroshi Hasegawa, an analyst at SMBC Nikko Securities in Tokyo.

“But the industry is always subject to geopolitical factors such as terrorism and the North Korea issue,” Hasegawa told AFP ahead of the JAL release.

© Agence France-Presse