FTSE 100 International Consolidated Airlines Group (LON:IAG) saw its share price climb by 4.87% to 95.52p (as of 16:15 GMT) after posting results for the nine months to 30th September. The company said that flying levels had improved during the third quarter, but continued to be adversely impacted by COVID and associated government actions. Capacity during the fourth quarter is expected to be no more than 30% of its 2019 level. After tax and exceptional items, the firm has booked €5.5 billion in statutory losses for the first three quarters.
CEO Luis Gallego commented: “These results demonstrate the negative impact of COVID 19 on our business but they’re exacerbated by constantly changing government restrictions. This creates uncertainty for customers and makes it harder to plan our business effectively.
“We are calling on governments to adopt pre-departure testing using reliable and affordable tests with the option of post flight testing to release people from quarantine where they are arriving from countries with high infection rates. This would open routes, stimulate economies and get people travelling with confidence. When we open routes, there is pent up demand for travel. However, we continue to expect that it will take until at least 2023 for passenger demand to recover to 2019 levels.
“The Group has made significant progress on restructuring and we continue to reduce our cost base and increase the proportion of our variable costs.
“We have also successfully completed a €2.74 billion capital increase in the quarter. It strengthens our financial and strategic position and makes IAG better placed to take advantage of a recovery in air travel demand“.