LATAM Airlines forecasts higher margin for 2015
RIO DE JANEIRO Jan 7 (Reuters) - Latam Airlines, Latin America's largest airline, said on Wednesday it expects profits to improve in 2015 and forecast an operating margin of between 6 and 8 percent for the year.
LATAM, which was formed in 2012 in a tie-up between Chile's LAN and Brazil's TAM, said in July it expected an operating margin for 2014 of between 4 and 5 percent after a negative impact from the World Cup in Brazil.
Sales were down during the month-long event last year as Brazilians chose to stay home and non-sport visitors avoided the host country.
LATAM also said on Wednesday it expected to offer 2 to 4 percent more passenger seats in 2015, with its international seat offering seen expanding between 4 and 6 percent this year and domestic seats in Brazil expected to remain stable.
The company also said it expected an average exchange rate for the Brazilian real of 2.7 per dollar in 2015, compared with 2.4 last expected in 2014. Fuel prices were forecast at $85 per barrel in 2015, down from $120 per barrel for 2014. (Reporting by Luciana Bruna; Writing by Caroline Stauffer; Editing by Bernard Orr)
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