In order to get a complete look at WestJet’s financial performance we need to break from the main four financial statements and look at a few industry specific indicators. The first indicator is Revenue per Available Seat Mile (RASM). This is the total revenue divided by total guest capacity. WestJet’s RASM for 2008 is 14.88 cents up from 14.62 cents in 2007. It has grown year after year since 2004. Air Canada’s RASM for 2008 is 17.9 cents up from 16.9 cents in 2007. This makes sense based on WestJet’s low cost strategy.
The second key indicator is the Cost per Available Seat Mile (CASM). This is simply the operating expense divided by total guest capacity. In 2008 WestJet’s CASM was 13.17 cents up from 12.34 cents in 2007. These numbers are quite low compared to Air Canada’s CASM of 17.9 cents in 2008 and 16.3 cents in 2007. This indicates that WestJet does a better job of controlling expenses than Air Canada.