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China Eastern & China Southern leap with joy as they rejoin the market. Asia Pacific airline shares

12-Dec-2008

Asia Pacific share markets closed mixed, but fairly quiet yesterday. The Hong Kong Hang Seng rose 36.16 points (+0.23%) to 15613.9, the Tokyo Nikkei rose 60.31 (+0.70%) to 8720.55, but the Australian ASX200 fell 42.7 (-1.17%) to 3598.

US shares fell overnight on 11-Nov-08, as prospects weakened for the approval of a USD15 billion rescue plan for the troubled US car industry after a key Republican senator opposed the measure. With a late dive, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 196.33 (-2.24%) to 8565.09 points. The Nasdaq decreased 38.12 (-3.12%) to 1183.47 and the Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 10.93 (-2.52%) to 422.32.

Airlines

The two major Chinese carriers' share prices leapt over 40% yesterday, as they rejoined the market after periods of suspension. The exuberance was due to the substantial financial injections made by the central government, to support them through this difficult period. Whether the amounts will do any more than paper over cracks is still a question to be addresses, given the looming need for restructuring in some form.

Indian carriers all experienced a small boost, as security tensions reduced somewhat and travel advisories were relaxed. Conflicts with local agents over commission levels too are being soothed as Jet, and yesterday Kingfisher, agreed to pay 3% levels.

Otherwise, in a generally quiet market, most airline shares remained around previous levels - although Air China and Shanghai Airlines came back off some of their recent gains.

Cathay Pacific's continuing ugly outlook for premium traffic and the slump in the Hong Kong O&D market in its November report today are yet to have an impact on the carrier's share price.

Oil Prices

Meanwhile, Oil prices rallied on 11-Dec-08 gaining USD4.46 a barrel (+10.25%) closing at USD47.98 a barrel, as the International Energy Agency predicted global growth in oil demand would resume in 2009 and the Saudi oil minister said it pumped less oil than expected last month.

Asia Pacific selected airlines daily share price movements (% change): 11-Dec-08


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