Business

Thomas Cook profits down in tough year

People on beach in Benidorm

Thomas Cook's profits have fallen after a tough year for the tourism industry, with trading affected by terror attacks in Europe and political instability in Turkey.

The travel company said pre-tax profits fell to £42m from £50m last year.

It said the fall in demand for holidays in Turkey had been offset by the rise in popularity of other destinations.

Chief executive Peter Fankhauser told the BBC: "We are pleased with what we have achieved."

"We have had to follow the demand of our customers, who are choosing to go to the Spanish islands and mainland."

Questioned about the impact of the falling pound on the company's future profits, Mr Fankhauser added: "We don't see a noticeable impact so far and don't expect one next summer."

The company's underlying earnings fell by £2m to £308m, but the board recommended a dividend payment, of 0.5p a share, for the first time in five years.

Its UK market continued to strengthen while it made record profits in northern Europe.

Thomas Cook said it was "a cautious approach to the year ahead".

It added that trading for the winter was in line with expectations, while bookings for next summer had made "an encouraging early start".

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