Thomas Cook warns over "soft" UK economy

TOUR operator Thomas Cook said it anticipated operating profit for the full year would be at the lower end of expectations following poor trading in the UK and the adverse impact of exchange rate movements.

Europe's second biggest travel firm said the weakness in the UK market had impacted margins while the costs of disruption from the Icelandic volcanic ash outbreak was now expected to be £81.9m – above the original estimate of £60-80m.

"As we enter the final quarter, it is apparent that trading in the UK business is softer than expected and the recent weakening of the euro will have an adverse impact on translation of our euro-based earnings," Chief Executive Manny Fontenla-Novoa said in a statement.