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What problems? Most of CAPA’s Top 20 European airline stocks outperformed the market in 2012


“Beleaguered airlines” is an expression frequently heard. The trials and tribulations of the airline business are only too well documented.

But 2012 did not reflect any such burdens on most airline share prices – at least not in Europe. Despite a gruesome economic environment and uncertainty during the year, many major airlines clawed their way back on stock exchanges across the region as investors reacted against the often steep falls of 2011. Improved 3Q2012 results added to the positive sentiment.

Anyone investing wisely in European airlines in Jan-2012 would have been looking at a tidy paper profit by the end of the year.

Of CAPA’s Top 20 European airlines (by seats flown), most outperformed the overall market, with Turkish Airlines shares rising a near-unbelievable 193%. [1739 words]

Unlock the following content in this report:


  • Europe’s Top 20 airline shares had one of their best years in 2012
  • European travel demand held up surprisingly well in 2012
  • And the worst of the pain is over! – or so some political leaders suggest
  • Europe’s big LCCs are finding the climate highly attractive, whatever the weather
  • Turkish Airlines, Norwegian and easyJet outshine the share market in 2012
  • Lufthansa begins 2013 with many new agendas
  • Air France-KLM too has work to do in 2013
  • IAG is being held back by Iberia and the Spanish economy
  • airberlin has it all before it in 2013
  • SAS is getting close to its endgame
  • Flybe staring at a real need to reduce cost and find a clear strategy path
  • Meanwhile the TUI Travel Group may have some pointers for the future of European aviation
  • Perhaps a brighter airline outlook in 2013 – will it be reflected in airline valuations?

Graphs and data:

  • Bloomberg Airline share price index Jan-2007 to Dec-2012
  • Top 20 European Airline Groups by intra-Europe seats flown (21-Jan-2013 to 27-Jan-2013)
  • Association of European Airlines: Monthly traffic data, 2012
  • Association of European Airlines: Annual traffic data, 2004-2011
  • European airline share price performances 01-Jan-2012 to 31-Dec 2012
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