Ryanair pre-tax profit rises more than a quarter

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Irish budget carrier Ryanair has posted a €451 million ($633 million) pre-tax profit for the full year to 31 March, a rise of 27%.

This figure did not take into account an exceptional charge of €29.7 million attributable to the disruption from the Icelandic volcanic eruption in 2010.

Ryanair's net profit rose 25% to €401 million.

Passenger numbers were up by 8% and an average 12% increase in fares drove revenues up 21% to €3.6 billion.

The airline's average load factor for the year increased slightly to 83%.

Ryanair expects a 10% increase in passenger numbers over the first half of this year and a 4% cut in the second half, giving overall growth of 4% to 75 million.

It is predicting a similar net profit for the current fiscal year.

But the airline is cautious, particularly as is expects operating costs per passenger to rise by 13% as a result of higher fuel prices. "Since we have limited visibility on bookings we remain concerned at the impact of the recession, austerity measures and falling consumer confidence on fares."