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Transat AT says higher fuel prices, weak dollar hampering bottom line

A plane belonging to Canadian private airline company Transat is pictured after arriving at Toussaint Louverture airport in Port-au-Prince January 23, 2013.

Swoan Parker/REUTERS

Transat AT Inc. says fluctuations in the Canadian dollar and higher fuel costs have hampered its attempts to return to sustainable profits.

The Montreal-based travel company says it had a $32.1 million net loss in its first quarter ended Jan. 31, nearly half of the $61.2 million net loss in the same period a year earlier.

It says that was mostly because of a favourable swing in the value of derivatives used to offset the impact of higher fuel prices.

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However, Transat's adjusted net loss grew from $30.4 million to $36 million as costs rose due to rising fuel prices and the weaker loonie.

Revenue dropped by $36.4 million to $689.3 million as the company cut the number of Sun destination packages.

Transat's net loss equalled 87 cents per share and its adjusted loss was 98 cents per share.

The company owns Air Transat and a variety of related businesses that focus on vacation travel mainly in Canada, the United States, the Caribbean region and Europe.

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