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While You Were Out…

I’m back from vacation, and I can now say that 80 degrees with occasional rain is much better than 18" of snow and 9 degrees. I see why people move to warm places.

Though I’m not particularly happy about it, I’m back home which means dragging myself out of bed to write this thing (I’ll be more optimistic tomorrow, I promise).

Since I know that you don’t read any media besides this site, i thought I’d catch you up on the news we missed while I was gone:

–A miserable week (again) for airline earnings, as Delta posted an exceptionally awful $2.2 billion loss for the quarter.  They do have a bunch of cash, though, so don’t take that as a sign Delta is going anywhere.  Do take it as a sign, though, that the fare restructuring will not help in the short-term.  Continental and America West also had disappointing quarters (to say the least).  America West, who had announced transcon routes with quite a bit of fanfare about 18 months ago, said they were stopping most of those routes.  Analysts at the time wondered why the carrier was getting into that crowded market. Those analysts were correct in asking that question.

–US Airways will likely not have to liquidate in the next couple of months, as its final union group (machinists) ratified cuts, giving the airline some breathing room.  Paycut estimates for the machinists range from 12-20%.  US Airways CEO said that the airline now has a "strong tailwind" to help them get through bankruptcy.  Like other tailwinds, something stinks about asking your employees to take barely livable wages to save a dying business.

–United also received some good news as its CEO said the airline will be out of bankruptcy by fall.  If oil prices stay at $50 a barrel or so, we’ll see if this date really holds.

–Also on the positive side, Independence Air bought itself some time, announcing that two hedge funds have purchased 12% of the company.

–And finally, Airbus rolled out its long-awaited A380 aircraft (if you cared about this, you’ve seen the photos already).  Emirates says it wants a stretch version of the already-gigantic aircraft so it can place another 150 seats.  I’ve already told my wife that when this thing launches, I’m on the first flight to Dubai…

…glad to be back, and we’ll have some fresh(ish) news tomorrow.

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