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Qantas share price dips despite performance lift

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The Qantas Airways Limited (ASX: QAN) share price is having an underwhelming start to the week.

In afternoon trade, the airline operator’s shares are down 1% to $5.25.

What’s going on with the Qantas share price?

Investors appears to have been selling down the Qantas share price on Monday due to weakness in the US airline industry on Friday night amid recession concerns.

The likes of American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines all dropped deep into the red on Wall Street at the end of last week.

It is worth noting that it isn’t just Qantas that is falling today. The Air New Zealand Limited (ASX: AIZ) share price is down 2% at the time of writing.

Unfortunately, this industry weakness has offset the release of a positive update by Qantas this morning.

What did Qantas announce?

According to the release, Qantas’ operational performance has continued to improve towards pre-COVID levels, with flight delays, cancellations, and mishandled bag rates all falling in the first two weeks of September.

The release reveals that the company’s on time performance has improved from 52% of flights on time in July, to 67% in August, and now 71% between 1-14 September.

Another positive is that flight cancellations have reduced to just 2% during the month so far. This is down from 7.5% in June, 6.2% in July, and 4% in August. Importantly, the current figure is below pre-COVID levels.

Finally, mishandled bags are at 6 per 1000 passengers overall and at 5 per 1000 for domestic flights, which is at pre-COVID levels. That’s despite there being an increase in the average number of bags checked in per passenger compared to pre-COVID, reflecting the strong rebound in leisure travel.

However, Qantas acknowledges that with school holidays, long weekends, and football finals coming up, its performance will be tested by high levels of demand at peak times.

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