International Airlines Group (IAG) has reported record first quarter operating profits of €170 million.

The figure is nearly 10 per cent up on the €155 million reported for the same period last year, despite a 2.8 per cent fall in total revenue to €4.9 billion for the quarter, and a 4.2 per cent fall in passenger revenue to €4.3 billion.

IAG said the revenue figures were affected by Easter falling in April this year compared to being in March in 2016, which caused yields to drop on leisure-orientated routes, although the Easter factor was “partially offset by improvements in corporate bookings”.

Commenting on the news CEO Willie Walsh said:

“This is a record performance in Q1, traditionally our weakest quarter, with the improving trend in passenger unit revenue continuing.

“The impact of currency exchange was €32 million in the quarter due to the translation of sterling profit into euros.”

The group’s newest subsidiary carrier – low-cost long-haul airline Level – will take to the skies next month, and Walsh said that it had “already been extremely successful with sales running well ahead of expectations”.