May 16, 2019 / 11:28 AM / 9 days ago

UPDATE 1-Singapore Airlines posts record revenue on passenger growth, profit falls

(Recasts, adds capacity forecast)

SINGAPORE, May 16 (Reuters) - Singapore Airlines Ltd on Thursday reported its highest ever annual revenue on a jump in passengers, though higher fuel costs nearly halved its profit.

Revenue rose 3.3% to S$16.32 billion ($11.93 billion) for the year ended March 31, as the number of passengers it carried jumped 7.2%.

The airline’s net profit fell to S$682.7 million in the period from S$1,301.6 million a year earlier, when the figures were restated to reflect accounting changes. Fuel costs jumped 25.1%, weighing on the profit.

Singapore Airlines forecast 2019/20 group passenger capacity growth of 6%, lower than the 6.4% recorded in 2018/19, weighed down by issues related to its Boeing 737 MAX 8 fleet and Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 TEN engines.

The airline’s regional arm, SilkAir, operated six Boeing Co 737 MAX jets before they were grounded in March following a deadly crash in Ethiopia.

The carrier last month also grounded two Boeing 787-10 jets fitted with Rolls-Royce Holdings PLC Trent 1000 TEN engines after checks of its fleet found premature blade deterioration.

The carrier, a benchmark for Asia’s premium airline industry, also warned that trade tensions and slowing economic growth in its key markets threatened its operating environment. ($1 = 1.3683 Singapore dollars) (Reporting by Jamie Freed and Aditya Soni; Editing by Deepa Babington)

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