Air France KLM's September passenger traffic rises from year ago

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PARIS (Reuters) – Air France KLM (PA:) reported higher passenger traffic figures for September on Tuesday, as the carrier looks to benefit from the collapse of the two of its smaller French competitors.

Air France KLM said it carried about 9.3 million passengers in September, up 2.2 percent from last year. The group has been reporting higher traffic figures for 17 months running.

The load factor – a measure of how packed an airline’s planes are – increased by 0.6 percentage points to 89.2 percent from last year, the company said.

Air France-KLM’s CEO Ben Smith said last month that a market consolidation through the bankruptcies of certain carriers would eventually benefit the country’s aviation industry and jobs.

The French state has a 14.3 percent stake in Air France KLM, while Delta Airlines (N:) and China Eastern Airlines (SS:) each hold an 8.8 percent stake in the group.

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