el al plane 88.
(photo credit: )
El Al Israel Airlines said Monday that it had its most successful quarter ever, in the three months ending June 30, as profits soared despite further rises in oil prices.
Net profit for the second quarter were some 326 percent higher at $29.9 million, compared to the $7m. recorded in the parallel period last year. Revenues rose 30% to $423m. from $324m. in the 2004 quarter.
For the first half of the year, the company had a net profit of $11.4m. after reporting a net loss of $18.5m. in the first quarter.
Oil prices rose by 52% during the quarter and accounted for 23% of El Al expenses, amounting to $98m.
El Al said that profits were affected in the quarter by a capital gain of $8m. that it realized from the sale of Maman Cargo Terminals and Handling in April, and a one-time expense of $10m. from a preliminary agreement to extend its program in 2006.
El Al CEO Chaim Romano said in a statement that the company's ability to produce a profit is a result of intense activities which resulted in a rise in traffic and seat occupancy.
The second quarter 2005 saw a 33% rise in passenger traffic for the airline and a 80% occupancy.
The privatization of El Al was completed in December 2004 with the sale of the government's controlling stake to Knafaim holdings, which now holds 39.6% of the airline. The state still owns 21.7%, while the company's workers have a 8.1% share.
Shares in El Al traded less than a percent higher in Tel Aviv at NIS 3.13, while Knafaim were up 0.4% at NIS 38.06. The earnings were released after the close of trade Monday.