Thomas Cook dips as Tui gives sunny forecasts

Marion Dakers

TUI TRAVEL shares took a trip higher yesterday after the holiday group raised its full-year profit forecasts.

But Tui’s ascent left behind rival Thomas Cook, whose stock slumped six per cent as the firm reported slower trading over the summer.

Tui said it is confident that underlying operating profits will be at least 11 per cent higher than last year, up from its previous goal of 10 per cent.

The group, which runs the Thomson and First Choice brands, said bookings for winter are down two per cent on last year, and sales in Egyptian resorts have taken a dent from the recent unrest in the country.

Thomas Cook, meanwhile, said a rash of last-minute bookings a year ago have left this summer looking slower.

The firm added in its pre-close update that winter bookings appeared to be getting off to a quiet start, though average selling prices were up strongly so far.

“If you just read the tone of the statements, Thomas Cook’s is a little more subdued than the Tui one,” Numis Securities analyst Wyn Ellis told Reuters yesterday.

“Thomas Cook has come a long way and I think there’s just a little too much expectation in the market. It wasn’t a bad update by any means but there’s a few headwinds going into the winter.”

Shares in Tui closed up almost four per cent at 370.4p.