Asian money movements hit Lufthansa profit

City A.M. Reporter
GERMAN airline Lufthansa yesterday warned that weakness in Asian currencies would weigh on revenue growth at its passenger airline business this year and that a grindingly slow market recovery was set to dent profit at its cargo unit.

Germany’s flag carrier said the weak Japanese yen and Indian rupee in particular weighed on third-quarter revenues at the passenger division, its biggest business.

Lufthansa shares dropped 3.3 per cent, underperforming a flat blue-chip Dax index.

“The Passenger Airline Group is now forecasting for 2013 a revenue on par with previous year,” it said yesterday. The previous forecast had been for a moderate increase in revenue.

Airline passenger profits grew 3.5 per cent to €561m (£481m) in the three months to the end of September, compared with 15.4 per cent growth in the year-earlier quarter.

Europe’s biggest airline also warned that it now expected its cargo business to end 2013 with a result “in the high double-digit million euro range” compared with its previous outlook for operating profit in a three-digit million range.