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IATA global passenger traffic results reflect slowest year-over-year increase
The International Air Transport Association's (IATA) global passenger traffic results for January 2018 show that traffic - revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) - rose by 4.6% compared to that of January 2017. These results indicate the slowest year-over-year increase in nearly four years, however, results were affected by the timing of the later Lunar New Year in 2018, as well as less favourable comparisons with the strong upward trend in traffic seen in late 2016-early 2017.
IATA estimates the impact of the later Lunar New Year-related travel period holiday represented around two-fifths of the slowdown in year-over-year growth for the month. January capacity – available seat kilometres (ASKs) – rose by 5.3%, and load factor slipped half a percentage point to 79.6%.
"Despite the slower start, economic momentum is supporting rising passenger demand in 2018. That said, concerns over a possible trade war involving the US could have a serious dampening effect on global market confidence, spilling over into demand for air travel," said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO.