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& Bullets

Musings on the worlds of aviation, military and international affairs.


With reviews of books that cover these topics


Uneasy about Easy

After a stunning period of share price out-performance (see below), Easyjet shares are joining the FTSE 100 index. And the airline announced at the beginning of last month that it was creating 330 pilot jobs around the UK. But dig below the surface and there is a lot of discontent….


The airline has been using the leading pilot recruitment businesses CTC and Parc to supply 20% of its flight crew requirements - young and inexperienced aircrew, on a casual basis, without giving them permanent contracts. These new 330 permanent contracts will be from the casual pool of first officers at those two contractors. These young pilots have no certainty of income whilst in this CTC/Parc pool, yet have the millstone of the loan they have taken out to fund their training (typically c.£100k). In the quiet winter months, they may be doing no flying, losing their skills, receiving no pay, and pondering the extent of their bank debt.


These young first officers will now be earning I believe c £33k plus £5k variable – worse than the existing terms for permanent first officer contracts. So EZJ is successfully continuing to exploit the eagerness of young pilot wannabees to drive down its aircrew costs.


The airline’s profit before tax per seat has rising strongly from £0.83 in 2009 to £4.81 in 2012. Costs per seat rose only from £34.37 to £36.25 in the same period. A triumph  given the oil price.

Easyjet climbs into the investment stratosphere

easy A319



The chart at left is produced by a programme called Sharescope, which I find invaluable for investment monitoring and analysis. Should you want two months free subscription, please email me at the contact address.


The shares have outperformed the FTSE Allshare index by c 131% over the last year.

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