City downgrades hit Easyjet shares

Easyjet blamed unrest and political tension after its latest trading update prompted the City to scale back forecasts for annual profits.

Shares fell by four per cent as CEO Carolyn McCall said she expected pre-tax profits for the year to end September to be in the range of £545-570 million.

This represents an increase of at least 14 per cent on the year before but City experts had pencilled in a figure of £572m.

Ms McCall said the expected range assumes “no further significant disruption” and “includes the impact from the situations in Israel, Egypt and Moscow”.

She said the quarterly performance was “solid” and that the airline was “well positioned to continue to deliver sustainable growth and returns”.

Easyjet also said revenue per seat (RPS) growth at Gatwick had been hit by increased capacity after it picked up flying slots from rival Flybe.

Total revenues for Q3 grew 8.6 per cent over last year to £1.24bn and RPS grew by 1.7 per cent