The company said profit before tax, foreign exchange and the impact of its hedging contracts will be “significantly ahead” of current expectations but parts of its existing hedging contracts have become “ineffective” due to reductions in flying capacity.
Like almost all airlines, Dart uses hedging contracts to protect against potential volatility in currency rates, aviation fuel price and interest rates.
Dart said summer 2020 bookings remained ahead of last year as hitherto strong demand for its package holidays and flights, which had seen bookings tracking higher than its 16% planned increase in capacity, but added that “momentum has weakened” in recent weeks.
In light of the difficulty in predicting the spread and the ensuing effects of coronavirus, the board said it was “currently unable to determine how this will effect group profit” for the coming financial year.
“We continue to monitor the situation carefully and are taking proportionate actions to underpin the stability of the business, which includes reducing capacity on some routes where warranted,” the company said.
Dart’s Fowler Welch arm, a distribution and logistics provider for the food supply chain, was continuing to trade in line with expectations, with the revenue pipeline seeing existing and new business opportunities.