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Airlines face fragile winter, Ryanair CEO says after record summer profits

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Ryanair reported record summer profits, but Chief Executive Michael O’Leary warned winter is “very fragile.”
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“We look set for a strong winter but I’m conscious last year we had omicron at the end of November which crushed Christmas and the Ukraine invasion crushed Easter,” O’Leary told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” on Monday.

The Irish airline posted its largest ever after-tax profit for the six months to September at 1.37 billion euros ($1.37 billion) on Monday.

There was an expectation that demand could shrink as the cost-of-living crisis takes its toll on household budgets across Europe, but appetite for travel is still there, he said.

“We’ve been waiting for demand to tighten up but we’ve not seen it yet — but there is a fragility there,” O’Leary told CNBC. “[People] were locked up for two years [during the Covid-19 pandemic], travel is one of the things they’re going to keep doing,” he said.

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