Airline Weekly Lounge

Airline Weekly Lounge Episode 84: Sound the Alarm for U.S. Airline Earnings?

October 31, 2017

With most of the U.S. airlines having reported third-quarter earnings, it’s now clear that rising revenues aren’t keeping up with rising costs. While every U.S. airline fell victim to this condition, some are weathering it better than others. United and American Airlines were a couple of the “others” stumbling in Q3—at least compared to Delta. Neither hurricanes in Florida nor the horror in Las Vegas helped Allegiant, but it was a 19% increase in operating costs that really hurt profits.

Spirit saw $40m wiped out by hurricanes. Southwest and JetBlue both maintained margins near last year’s level, but JetBlue’s hurricane problem could be a fourth quarter story with Puerto Rico’s slow recovery. Things are good at Alaska Airlines, despite some transcontinental trouble. Lastly, Hawaiian saw year-over-year profits dip so mildly and starting from such great heights that one might think there’s no trouble in paradise. Then why did Hawaiian’s stock plummet last week?

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