In its most recent quarterly survey of airline business confidence, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) found that 80 percent of airline CFOs and heads of cargo saw an improvement in third-quarter profitability compared with the same quarter of 2016 – making it the strongest outcome IATA has seen in a decade.
Demand for airfreight has been robust in 2017 and is expected to remain strong, supporting demand for the increasing cargo volumes reported by the survey participants. Eighty-seven percent of the respondents said they expect stable or improved profits over the next year.
During the third quarter, 58 percent of the survey respondents reported increased cargo volumes for the third quarter of 2017, while only 12 percent saw a decline in volumes during Q3 2017. None of the airlines surveyed said they expect a decline in airfreight volumes over the next 12 months, and 48 percent expected an additional increase.
Freight yields also rose during the quarter, with 48 percent of survey respondents reporting increases. Most respondents also said they expect yields to be relatively steady over the next year, while input costs, such as fuel prices, will likely climb during the next 12 months.