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Fitch Ratings forecasts steady recovery stead recovery in Business demand; LAN and JetBlue gain

North and South American airline stocks gained on Thursday (09-Dec-2010) after Fitch Ratings released its outlook for US airlines. According to the report, continued positive trends in passenger yields and unit revenue linked to the steady recovery of high-fare business travel demand are the critical drivers of credit quality improvement for the sector in 2011.

See related CAPA Profile: Premium Traffic

LAN reports improved passenger numbers

Lan Airlines (+0.8%) and Copa Airlines (+0.7%) were the only Latin American carriers to gain for the session. During trading, LAN reported a 2.0 ppt year-on-year rise in load factor, to 81.5%.

Passenger numbers were also up for the month, rising 10.7% to 1.5 million. Domestic and international passenger numbers both rose for the period.

See related CAPA Profile: Traffic and Capacity

The rise in LAN stocks was despite a 0.5% decline in Chile’s IPSA index for the day. The market closed lower on profit taking.

JetBlue PRASM gains 10%

JetBlue (+0.4%) also made a slight gain, after reporting a 10% rise in passenger revenue per ASM (PRASM) for Nov-2010. Also for the month, the LCC reported a 3.5 ppt improvement in load factor for Nov-2010 to  80.9%. Passenger numbers were up 12.4% to 2.0 million.

Also up for the session were Republic Airways (+3.3%), Hawaiian Airlines (+3.3%) and American Airlines (+3.1%).

North & South America selected airlines daily share price movements (% change): 09-Dec-2010