WestJet’s net earnings down 67.2% in 2018, as higher fuel prices bite

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Canadian airline WestJet has reported full year net earnings of C$91.5 million for the 2018 financial year – a 67.2 per cent fall on the net earnings of C$279.1 million in the previous year – as higher fuel prices impacted finances.

Total revenue in 2018 was up five per cent to C$4.7 billion on 2017’s figure of C$4.5 billion.

The airline flew 25.4 million passengers last year, 5.6 per cent more than 2017. The load factor across its network was up 0.2 percentage points to 83.8 per cent. In 2018, fuel costs per litre were up 26.6 per cent on 2017 to 81 cents.

WestJet president and chief executive officer, Ed Sims said: “In 2018 we executed several significant milestones on our path to becoming a high-value global network airline.

“As we enter 2019, we continue to build momentum and are well-positioned to deliver on our strategic initiatives and expand margins.”