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IATA Reports ‘Modest’ Slowdown

IATA reports that while global passenger traffic date for October 2019 showed a 3.4% rise in demand compared to a year ago, it was a “modest” slowdown from the 3.9% growth recorded in September.

The airline industry association says that this is the result of softer traffic performance in domestic markets.

October capacity (available seat kilometers or ASKs) increased by 2.2% and load factor climbed 0.9 percentage point to 82.0%, which was a record for October.

Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO, said: “Traffic growth continues to be depressed compared to historical long-term growth levels, reflecting continued moderating economic activity in some key markets and sagging business confidence. However, the fact that traffic is growing is a positive, and the industry continues to do an excellent job of maximizing asset efficiency, as shown in the record load factor.”

October international passenger demand rose 3.2% compared to October 2018, unchanged from September’s year-over-year performance. With the exception of Latin America, all regions recorded increases, led by Middle East airlines for the first time since June 2018. Capacity climbed 1.6%, and load factor rose 1.3 percentage points to 81.0%.

As for the bottom line, de Juniac noted that: “The airline industry has faced strong headwinds in 2019 but continues to enable the global connectivity that supports world trade and greater understanding among peoples and cultures, things we can definitely use more of, particularly in this time of trade wars and geopolitical tension.”

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