PlaneBusiness Banter Now Posted!

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This week’s issue of PlaneBusiness Banter is now posted. Subscribers can access this week’s issue here.

This week there’s clearly one lead story — and that is the strike by the pilots at Spirit Airiines. The airline has now canceled flights through Wednesday and it does appear that ALPA has been very effective in shutting down the airline.

But if this continues for another couple of days, I think we could see the situation turn ugly pretty quickly, as I don’t think management is going to sit idly by and watch the airline go kaput. Does this mean that management will cave and come to terms with the pilots on a new contract? Not necessarily.

Could be an interesting week.

On the flip side, both JetBlue and American Airlines should see some positive revenue increase as they both fly a lot of overlap with Spirit.

This week all interested parties will be in Washington talking about the United Airlines/Continental Airlines merger in front of Congressman James Oberstar’s (D-Minn.) House aviation subcommittee.

This week we shine the spotlight on airline consultant Hubert Horan, who is going to be testifying Wednesday. Unlike almost everyone else under the sun, Horan does not think the proposed merger is a good idea. But his take is a bit different than simply calling it “bad for consumers.” We discuss why it is he feels this way, and you know what — I found myself agreeing with him more than I had anticipated.

Big week for airline analysts and airline industry research. Mike Linenberg, who called Merrill Lynch home for many many years, left there this spring and this morning he rolled out his first package of airline research under the Deutsche label. He initiated coverage on a slew of stocks. More on that in this week’s issue.

Glenn Engel, who was with Goldman Sachs for many years but who has been out of the airline research game for a couple of years, also returned this month. He recently issued a rather nifty examination of who’s doing what and to whom in the top 25 markets. We talk about that this week as well.

And hey, in honor of the hearings this week in Washington, I decided to drag out a classic Glenn Tilton corporate speak quote from the PBB archives. You’ll love it.

All this and more in this week’s issue of PlaneBusiness Banter.