Aer Lingus warns strikes could wipe a fifth from its earnings

 
Marion Dakers
Aer Lingus yesterday blamed looming strike action for its surprise profit warning, in which it said profits could be up to a fifth lower than last year.

The Irish carrier said Impact union’s strikes, expected next week, had caused “significant damage” to bookings over the crucial summer months.

The firm said yesterday that, providing there were no more strikes, 2014 operating profits were set to be 10 to 20 per cent lower than last year, or between €49m (£39.5m) and €55m.

“The outcome will depend in part on the speed with which we can win back customer confidence,” it said.

Aer Lingus said on 20 May that trading had been strong and in line with the prior year. This is the second time the firm has warned on profits in less than a year, having blamed tough price competition from Ryanair in September.

Dublin-listed shares in Aer Lingus fell 3.2 per cent yesterday to €1.44.

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