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Airline industry profits will come in lower than forecast this year as passenger numbers and cargo volumes are held back by slowing economic growth and global trade wars, the International Air Transport Association said. The new figure equates to a 5 percent decline from earnings last year, which were restated by IATA Wednesday. One worry is that a glut of new aircraft will expand airline capacity too fast, holding back fares and denting the forecast rebound in earnings, which IATA now pegs at $29.3 billion for the coming year. The emerging phenomenon of flight-shaming is another challenge for the industry, with changing passenger habits and a possible tax on airline fuel in Europe threatening industry profit.North America should be easily the most profitable region, accounting for 65 percent of industry earnings, according to IATA.
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