Ryanair profits hit by higher wage costs

Ryanair says its profits in the April to June quarter have been hit by higher wage costs as the airline faces strikes by staff over pay and conditions.

It said higher oil prices and a fall in fares also dented profits, which fell 20% to €319m (£285m).

Ryanair is facing more strikes in the next few days. Pilots in Dublin will strike on Tuesday, while cabin crew in Europe will strike later this week.

Ryanair also said average fares this summer would be lower than expected.

It put this down to tough competition, the heatwave in Northern Europe and uncertainty caused by the strikes.

More disruption

Ryanair said staff costs were up by 34% because of a 20% increase in pilot pay, 9% more flight hours and a 3% general pay increase for non-flight staff.

However, it said it expected to meet profit forecasts of €1.25bn-€1.35bn for the full year. Shareholders, though, were disappointed, marking the shares down 5% in morning trading.

Staff at the airline are continuing to fight for better pay and conditions. Ireland-based pilots have held two 24-hour walk-outs and are due to hold another one on Tuesday.

In addition, this coming week will see 300 of its daily 2,400 flights cancelled on Thursday and Friday because of industrial action by cabin crew in Spain, Portugal, Italy and Belgium.