Webjet maintains 1H guidance

Travel website operator Webjet (ASX:WEB) has not raised its 1H guidance despite growing sales for the first four months, citing uncertainty over holiday period demand

Travel website operator Webjet (ASX:WEB) has maintained its 1H guidance of flat earnings year-on-year, despite an upswing in sales for the first four months.

Webjet's profit to the end of October has grown 15 per cent on the same period last year, with total transaction values growing 20 per cent, the company said in a market update.

But November and December sales from last year were very strong, and it is too early to assume that this upswing in volumes will repeat itself in 2010, Webjet said.

Consumers facing interest rate hikes and “critically major utility cost increases” may prove less inclined to travel this holiday period, the statement added.

Webjet advised it had accrued costs of around $250,000 evaluating a possible European acquisition which did not bear out, which will impact full-year earnings.

It is still too early to make a call on FY11 profit forecasts due to unpredictable macroeconomic factors, the company added.

WEB shares fell 6.84 per cent to 2.450 during Tuesday's trading following the announcement.

Webjet reported net profit of $10.5 million in FY10, up from $7.7 million in FY09.

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