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Air New Zealand posted a 9.4 percent fall in interim net profit Thursday but said it was still on track for its second-best full-year result.
The Kiwi flag carrier said net profit for the six months to December 31 was NZ$232 million ($170 million), down from NZ$256 million in the same period a year earlier.
It said the figure was still strong, given the previous result was boosted by a one-off sale of Virgin Australia shares, and aviation fuel prices had risen 18 percent since then.
‘We are thrilled with the performance of our network in the period,’ chief executive Chris Luxon said. ‘The domestic market continues to show strength driven by the New Zealand economy as well as inbound tourism.’
Operating revenue was NZ$2.3 billion, up 5.6 percent, and passenger numbers rose 5.5 percent to 8.5 million.
The airline, which announced an interim dividend of 11 cents a share, said it was expecting to achieve its second-highest full-year profit on the back of the half-yearly numbers.
The benchmark was set when it made NZ$463 million in the 2015-16 financial year.
Air New Zealand also announced the introduction of non-stop flights between Auckland and Taipei from November.
The earnings figures were released before the opening bell on the New Zealand stock exchange, where Air New Zealand shares last traded at NZ$2.965.