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Smoke detected in EgyptAir plane...

Tour operators steady as terror fears cloud airlines

Thomas CookShares in airline and travel operators recovered after Thursday’s slump which was prompted by renewed fears of terror attacks.

Suspicions that the EgyptAir plane crash may have been caused by a bomb immediately wiped 18% off the value of holiday airline operator Thomas Cook, but the stock rose on Friday and was trading almost 3% higher until closing up 1.7%. Shares in package holiday firm Tui closed 3% higher while EasyJet rose 0.6%.

Cook’s shares hit their lowest in three years after it revealed that summer holiday bookings were down 5% on last year. Revenues for the first half of the year have dipped from £2.74 billion to £2.67 bn.

Turkey, Tunisia and Egypt – which have been targeted by terrorists – are among those hardest hit.

Peter Fankhauser, chief executive of Thomas Cook, said the company had already suffered from the Brussels airport attack.

Package holiday firm Tui reported earlier this year that holiday bookings to Turkey are down 40% and EasyJet fell to a pre-tax loss in May.

Mr Fankhauser said holidaymakers were switching to Spain and the US, but this would not make up for the loss to other destinations.

EgyptAir crash

Investigators trying to find out what happened to EgyptAir flight MS804 from Paris to Cairo said smoke was detected inside the cabin of the plane before it crashed in the Mediterranean on Thursday.

Smoke detectors went off in the toilet and the aircraft’s electrics, minutes before the signal was lost,

Debris was found in the sea. The plant was carrying 66 passengers, including one Briton.

Egypt’s army spokesman said wreckage and passenger belongings had been recovered 290km (180 miles) from Alexandria.

Greek Defence Minister Panos Kammenos said a body parts, two seats and at least one suitcase had been found.

Egypt said the cause of the crash was more likely to have been terrorism than a technical fault.

 



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