When all was said and done, and the crystal ball descended in Times Square Wednesday night — I know that you were, just as I was, chomping at the bit to know the answer to one burning question.
Which airline stock was the top performer in 2008?
Against all odds, including floods, snow, sleet, testy employees and the darkness of oil (prices), which airline stock still managed to shine brightly against the setting sun of demand?
I am very happy to report that the airline stock that posted the highest return to shareholders in 2008 was one of our favorite airline stocks here at PlaneBusiness.
That stock was — Allegiant Travel Company. The company is the parent of Allegiant Airlines.
The airline, which managed to continue to post profits in 2008 — even though it was flying fuel-guzzling MD-80s, saw its shares climb a whopping 51% for the year, ending 2008 at 48.57 a share.
Not surprisingly, this year was one of the worst on record in terms of yearly gains and losses for the things with wings, collectively speaking.
Of all the airline and airline-related stocks we track, only four managed to post a gain for the year.
Those four were:
Hawaiian Airlines 25%
Alaska Air Group 17%
*Alaska and JetBlue are also two PlaneBusiness favorite stocks.
To see how your favorite (or not-so-favorite) airline stock performed in 2008, click here.