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Stocks

Air China flies high on strong April performance

HONG KONG -- Shares in leading Chinese carrier Air China  rose in Hong Kong on Tuesday, thanks to favorable traffic data from April and hopes for continued growth.

The stock reached as high as 5.77 Hong Kong dollars (74 cents) before closing up 2.14% at HK$5.74.

Air China announced after-hours Monday that it transported 8.02 million passengers in April, marking an 8.5% jump on the year. The January-April total rose 6.8% to 31.08 million.

Available seat kilometers, which measure passenger carrying capacity, climbed 9.7% year on year in April. Revenue passenger kilometers, which reflect the volume of passenger traffic, increased by 9.8%. Domestic-only figures rose 7.9% and 7.8%, respectively, while international flights enjoyed double-digit gains.

The airline also carried 4.6% more cargo in April. The cargo load factor climbed 0.2 point to 54%. The passenger load factor remained mostly flat at 80.3%.

Air China last month launched new routes connecting Chongqing to Dubai and Wenzhou to Seoul. Some market players expect a further increase in the number of Air China passengers when Shanghai Disneyland opens on June 16.

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