March 22, 2017 / 8:07 AM / 4 months ago

Israel's El Al Airlines swings to loss in Q4, revenue down

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TEL AVIV, March 22 (Reuters) - El Al Israel Airlines swung to a loss in the fourth quarter as revenue dropped, due in part to a pilots protest that led to costly flight disruptions and a squeeze from exchange rates.

Israel's flag carrier reported on Wednesday a quarterly loss of $2.4 million, down from a $12.2 million net profit a year earlier.

Revenue fell to $460.8 million from $476.3 during the same period in 2015.

The airline in December signed a deal with its pilots to end a year of protests that led to flight cancellations, delays, higher costs and angry passengers.

El Al said revenue was also hurt in the fourth quarter by "the erosion of exchange rates of currencies in which the company's sales transactions are conducted against the dollar."

The company said it saved $9.6 million on jet fuel expenses.

For all of 2016, El Al said its load factor increased to 84 percent and its market share at Israel's Ben Gurion International Airport edged higher to 32.6 percent. (Reporting by Tova Cohen; Editing by Jon Boyle)

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