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Alaska Air, American, US Airways, United, Continental, lead way south as market sentiment gets ugly

The Wall St Casino turned on airline stocks yesterday as the Dow Jones index was again battered, losing 4.1% on the day across the board.

The sensitivity of the airline sector was emphasised again, as the major US airlines lost over four times that. Alaskan lost a whopping 18.6%, American Airlines was close behind, down 18.1% and US Airways (-16.9%), United and Continental (-13.3%, Delta (-11.9%) were not far behind.

Of the US carriers, Southwest fared least badly, down a mere 4.0%.

In South America, Gol lost 10.8%, perhaps in sympathy, despite recently performing strongly after Goldman Sachs increased its recommendation to a "buy", on the basis of Gol's strong outlook.

North & South America selected airlines daily share price movements (% change): 05-Mar-09