IndiGo profit dives 73% as fuel prices hit roof

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The InterGlobe Aviation stock fell almost 17 percent in Thursday's trade after the firm reported a 73% fall in March quarter net profit to Rs 117.6 crore on higher fuel costs.

The company's Board of Directors recommended a dividend of Rs 6 per share.

Meanwhile, InterGlobe Aviation's profit missed analyst estimates by a wide margin due to higher fuel expenses rise, lower airfares and foreign exchange losses. The company's total debt as on March 31, 2018, was Rs 2,452 crore, which is entirely "aircraft related". CASK excluding fuel was INR 1.94 in the current quarter, an increase of 5.3% from the same period last year primarily on account of depreciation of Indian Rupee this quarter compared to an appreciation in the Indian Rupee in the same period last year. "We booked a forex loss of Rs 92.5 crore this quarter as compared to a gain of Rs 160 crore in the same period a year ago".

"We have reported our highest ever annual profits for fiscal 2018. We are cognisant of challenges we face and are taking steps to address them", Bhatia said, adding that the engine issues would take some time to get resolved.

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The full year results include certain credits received from manufacturers to offset some of the impact of aircraft grounding and delivery delays, the airline said.

IndiGo operated a fleet of 159 aircraft including 32 A320neos and 6 ATRs in the quarter, an increase of six aircraft during the quarter and operated a peak of 1.086 daily flights, including worldwide operations during the quarter.

"We continue to seek route rights and other necessary regulatory approvals as may be required to operate long haul flights", Bhatia said. The airline reported a foreign exchange loss of Rs 92.5 crore as against a gain of Rs 160 crore in the same quarter previous year. "Our total capacity for the fourth quarter was 17.1 billion ASKs, an increase of 20.9%", he said. "We're also studying the choice of wide-body aircraft [for the long-haul operations] and will update you once we have made more progress".

Shares of the carrier extended losses and dropped as much as 3.7 percent on Wednesday in Mumbai, touching their lowest intraday level in a month. Hours after the market close that day, the airline announced the resignation of Ghosh at 7.56 pm.