Here is the way I see AirTran now:ProsThey are currently profitable and they are upbeat about the way holiday bookings look. Also, the legacy carriers just raised round-trip fares and AAI may be able to follow that raise, which would give a nice bump up to earnings in the current quarter. They are fairly well hedged with regards to fuel prices. They are managing conservatively to stay profitable.ConsThe economy remains weak and fuel prices are again spiking on pure speculation, with no connection to law of supply and demand. Maintenance costs and airport proposed higher landing and takeoff fees are a problem.My thought is that if they can remain profitable until the economy clearly turns upward, a return to a share price of at least $7 within the next 6 months is very likely. Any thoughts?
A share price of $7 is still way off the break even mark, but I realized soon after buying this bird that navigating through economic turbulence is not enough to land an airline stock safely onto the growth runway.On the negative side, Airtran and other airlines alienate customers by hiding the true costs of travel inside nickel and dime add-on feeds not to mention performance records that make a mockery of schedules and respect for passenger time.On the positive side, Airtran gave GF a free drink when we flew home from WDW last month on her 50th birthday (head flight attendant said she deserved a drink on her 21st birthday, but GF said she deserved it for traveling with me). Plus, Airtran hasn't yet landed on a taxi way or missed the jet stream exit for the airport.FuskieWho notes Airtran is not his biggest loser stock but has been down almost since he first purchased at what he then thought was a low and has continued to flail ever since...
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