Stagecoach buses hit by bad weather

Poor summer weather hit Stagecoach's bus arm
Poor summer weather hit Stagecoach's bus arm
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Unseasonable weather during the summer has dented demand across Stagecoach’s bus operations, the transport giant said today.

In a trading update, the Perth-based group said regional bus revenues edged up 1 per cent in the 12 weeks to 25 July, but passenger journey numbers were down about 0.7 per cent.

It said the decline was “driven by a reduction in the number of concessionary passenger journeys that we believe reflects the poorer summer weather in various parts of the UK”.

Stagecoach said it was pleased with the performance at its rail division, with like-for-like revenues 5.5 per cent ahead of last year, but its operations in North America saw sales decline 5.3 per cent in the three months to the end of July as low petrol prices saw customers opt for their cars rather than its Megabus coaches.

“Overall current trading is satisfactory and we remain on course to meet our expectations for the year,” Stagecoach said.

Analysts at Investec, which has an “add” rating on the group’s shares, have pencilled in a pre-tax profit of £208.3 million for the year to 30 April 2016, up from £185m last time.