10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014

We’d all like to invest like the legendary Warren Buffett, turning thousands into millions or more. Buffett analyzes companies by calculating return on invested capital, or ROIC, to help determine whether a company has an economic moat — the ability to earn returns on its money above that money’s cost.

In this series, we examine several companies in a single industry to determine their ROIC. Let’s take a look at Exelon (NYSE: EXC  ) and three of its industry peers to see how efficiently they use cash.

Of course, it’s not the only metric in value investing, but ROIC may be the most important one. By determining a company’s ROIC, you can see how well it’s using the cash you entrust to it and whether it’s actually creating value for you. Simply put, it divides a company’s operating profit by how much investment it took to get that profit. The formula is:

ROIC = net operating profit after taxes / Invested capital

(Get further detail on the nuances of the formula.)

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Singapore Airlines Ltd (SINGY)

Singapore Airlines Limited is a passenger air transportation company. The Company, together with its subsidiaries, is engaged in passenger and cargo air transportation, engineering services, training of pilots, air charters and tour wholesaling and related activities. The Company consists of 101 aircrafts. The Company operates in four segments: airline operations, cargo operations, engineering services and others. The Company’s subsidiaries are SIA Engineering Company Limited (SIAEC), SIA Cargo and SilkAir (Singapore) Private Limited (SilkAir). Effective December 24, 2013, Singapore Airlines Ltd, a unit of Temasek Holdings (Pte) Ltd, raised its interest to 40.004% from 32.67% by acquiring a 7.334% interest in Tiger Airways Holdings Ltd from Dahlia Investments Ptye Ltd and Aranda Investments Pte Ltd. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Bruce Kennedy]

    Business travel columnist Joe Brancatelli reports the world’s longest non-stop commercial route, the Singapore Airlines (OTC: SINGY) 18-hour, business class-only flight between Newark, N.J. and Singapore, will end on Saturday. The airline also retired the world’s second-longest non-stop flight, Los Angeles-to-Singapore, last month.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Copa Holdings SA (CPA)

Copa Holdings, S.A. (Copa Holdings), incorporated on May 06, 1998, is a Latin American provider of airline passenger and cargo service through its two principal operating subsidiaries, Copa Airlines and Copa Colombia. Copa Airlines operates from its position in the Republic of Panama, and Copa Colombia provides service within Colombia and international flights from various cities in Colombia to Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala and Costa Rica, complemented with service within Colombia. As of December 31, 2012, the Company operated a fleet of 83 aircraft with an average age of 5.13 years; consisting of 57 modern Boeing 737-Next Generation aircraft and 26 Embraer 190 aircraft. . As of December 31, 2012, the Company offers approximately 334 daily scheduled flights among 64 destinations in 29 countries in North, Central and South America and the Caribbean, mainly from its Panama City Hub.

Copa provides passengers with access to flights to more th an 150 other destinations through codeshare arrangements with UAL pursuant to which each airline places its name and flight designation code on the other’s flights. As of December 31, 2012, Copa had firm orders, including purchase and lease commitments, for 35 additional Boeing 737-Next Generation aircraft. Copa also has options for an additional 14 Boeing 737-Next Generation aircraft.

The Company competes with Avianca-Taca, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, American Airlines and LAN Group.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Will Ashworth]

    I don’t know what’s going to happen in six months, let alone 20 years. However, I do know that OLED plays in a very exciting space, and Discovery Capital still seems to agree. Financially, OLED stock is solid, and if things go the company’s way in the coming years, it should get big in a hurry.

    Best Stocks #3 (Midcap): Copa Holdings (CPA)

    I’m a big believer in Latin America. While it has its troubles like every other emerging market, I continue to view its growing middle class with envy. While our middle class is being hallowed out, Latin America’s is growing exponentially. The U.S. was never more secure economically than when its middle class was growing, so history has demonstrated what this can do for a country.

  • [By Asit Sharma]

    The airline industry has a singular talent for draining the pockets of well-intentioned investors. Highly leveraged balance sheets and bankruptcies are the norm. Significant labor costs and unpredictable jet fuel prices wreak havoc on variable costs. Yet some airlines generate solid returns quarter after quarter. Alaska Air Group (NYSE: ALK  ) , Ryanair (NASDAQ: RYAAY  ) , Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV  ) , and Copa Holdings (NYSE: CPA  ) each manage to be consistently profitable. Let’s examine a few themes they share in common, and zero in on their individual strategic ideas.

  • [By Arie Goren]

    After running this screen on May 21, 2013, before the markets’ open, I discovered the following eight stocks: Sunoco Logistics Partners LP (SXL), Leggett & Platt Inc (LEG), Copa Holdings SA (CPA), RPC Inc. (RES), Tupperware Brands Corp. (TUP), Herbalife Ltd. (HLF), John Wiley & Sons Inc. (JW.A) and C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc. (CHRW).

  • [By Michael J. Carr]

    Copa Holdings (NYSE: CPA) is also undervalued with a PEG ratio of 0.53. Copa Holdings provides airline passenger and cargo services within Colombia and international flights from various cities in Colombia to Panama, Venezuela, Ecuador, Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala and Costa Rica.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Air France KLM SA (AFLYY.PK)

Air France-KLM SA (Air France-KLM), incorporated on April 23, 1947, is an airline engaged in the business of passenger transportation. It has four segments: Passenger, Cargo, Maintenance and Other. The Company’s primary business is to hold direct or indirect interests in the capital of air transport companies and, more generally, in any companies in France or elsewhere whose purpose is related to the air transport business. Air France-KLM activities also include cargo, aeronautics maintenance and other air-transport related activities including, principally, catering and charter services. At March 31, 2011, the Air France-KLM group fleet consists of 609 aircraft, of which 593 were operational. At March 31, 2011, 274 aircraft were fully owned (45% of the fleet), 117 aircraft were under finance lease representing 19% of the fleet and 218 under operating lease representing 36% of the fleet.

Passenger

Passenger operating revenues primarily come from passenger transportation services on scheduled flights with the Company’s airline code, including flights operated by other airlines under code-sharing agreements. They also include commissions paid by SkyTeam alliance partners, code-sharing revenues, revenues from excess baggage and airport services supplied by the Company’s to third party airlines and services linked to information technology (IT) systems.

Cargo

Cargo operating revenues come from freight transport on flights under the companies’ codes, including flights operated by other partner airlines under code-sharing agreements. Other cargo revenues are derived principally from sales of cargo capacity to third parties. During the fiscal year ended March 31, 2011, the Company transported more than 1.5 million tons of cargo, of which 66% in the bellies of passenger aircraft and 33% in the cargo fleet, to a network of approximately 254 destinations in approximately 111 countries. Air Fra nce-KLM Cargo has a product range organized around four prod! uct families, Equation, Cohesion, Variation and Dimension.

Maintenance

Maintenance operating revenues are generated through maintenance services provided to other airlines and customers globally. The Company’s two engine shops are located in Amsterdam and Paris. CFM56 engine shops support the fleet of CFM56-5 power plants in the world, with nearly 400 engines operated by numerous airlines. CF6-80E1 provides full-service maintenance. KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M) provides an alternative to the manufacturer’s services in terms of overhaul and services on this engine with its offering supported by technological infrastructure.

Other

The revenues from this segment come primarily from catering supplied by the Company to third-party airlines and to charter flights operated primarily by Transavia. The catering business is regrouped around Servair, an Air France subsidiary which generates more than 90% of the reve nues of this activity, and KLM Catering Services, a subsidiary of KLM.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By El Torero]

    The airline will undoubtedly pounce on the likely failings of rival companies, though this is also an area where easyJet will be eager to move in. Spanair is gone as is Malev Zrt, two former Ryanair rivals. Air France-KLM (AFLYY.PK) and Iberia are in trouble, among other European airlines. Ryanair will take advantage of such weaknesses in its aim of becoming Europe’s out-and-out dominant short-haul carrier. As other airlines cut routes, airports are now looking to Ryanair to take up the newly available airport space. As a result of this, with "opportunities opening up in Germany, Scandinavia and Central Europe" in particular, Ryanair’s deputy chief executive, Howard Millar sees the Irish company increase its market share from 15 percent to 20 percent before the end of the decade.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: SkyWest Inc (SKYW)

SkyWest, Inc. (SkyWest), incorporated in 1972, through subsidiaries, SkyWest Airlines, Inc. (SkyWest Airlines) and ExpressJet Airlines, Inc. (ExpressJet) operates the regional airline in the United States. In addition, the Company provides ground handling services for other airlines throughout its system. The Company operates in two segments: SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet. On December 31, 2011, its subsidiary, ExpressJet Airlines, Inc. (ExpressJet Delaware) was merged into its subsidiary, Atlantic Southeast Airlines, Inc. (Atlantic Southeast), with the surviving company named ExpressJet Airlines, Inc. (the ExpressJet Combination). ExpressJet includes the operations of Atlantic Southeast Airlines, Inc. (Atlantic Southeast) and ExpressJet Airlines, Inc. (ExpressJet Delaware), which is prior to the ExpressJet Combination.

As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest and ExpressJet offered scheduled passenger and air freight service with approximately 4,000 total daily dep artures to different destinations in the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. All of its flights are operated as Delta Connection, United Express, Continental Express, US Airways Express or Alaska under code-share arrangements with Delta, United Air Lines, Inc. (United), Continental Airlines, Inc. (Continental), US Airways Group, Inc. (US Airways) and Alaska Airlines (Alaska). As of December 31, 2011, its consolidated fleet consisted of a total of 732 aircraft, of which 443 were assigned to United and Continental, 268 were assigned to Delta, eight were in preparation for new code-share assignments, five were assigned to Alaska, four were subleased to affiliated entities, two were assigned to US Airways and two were subleased to unaffiliated entities. In addition, it provides electronic or paper copies of its filings free of charge upon request.

As of December 31, 2011, it operated two types of regional jet aircraft: the Bombardier Aerospace (Bombardi er) regional jet, which include the 50-seat Bombardier CRJ20! 0 Regional Jet (the CRJ200), the 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700 Regional Jet (the CRJ700) and the 70-90-seat Bombardier CRJ900 Regional Jet (the CRJ900), and the 50-seat Embraer ERJ-145 regional jet (ERJ145). As of December 31, 2011, it also operated the 30-seat Embraer Brasilia EMB-120 turboprop (the Brasilia turboprop). During the year ended December 31, 2011, approximately 65.2% of the Company’s aggregate capacity was operated under the United Express Agreements and Continental Express Agreement, approximately 33.6% was operated under the Delta Connection Agreements, approximately 0.9% was operated under the Alaska Capacity Purchase Agreement, approximately 0.1% was operated under the US Airways Express Agreement and approximately 0.2% was operated under a code-share agreement with AirTran Airways, Inc.

On November 17, 2011, SkyWest Airlines and US Airways entered into the SkyWest Airlines US Airways Express Agreement. As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines ope rated two CRJ200s under the SkyWest Airlines US Airways Express Agreement, flying a total of approximately ten US Airways Express flights per day between Phoenix and designated outlying destinations. On April 13, 2011, SkyWest Airlines and Alaska entered into the SkyWest Airlines Alaska Capacity Purchase Agreement. As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines operated five CRJ700s under the SkyWest Airlines Alaska Capacity Purchase Agreement, flying a total of approximately 30 Alaska flights per day between Seattle, Portland and designated outlying destinations.

As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet scheduled the daily flights as Delta Connection carriers: 530 flights to or from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, 316 flights to or from Salt Lake City International Airport, 132 flights to or from Minneapolis International Airport, 94 flights to or from Memphis International Airport, 94 flights to or from Detroit International Airpor t and 8 flights to or from Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Inte! rnational! Airport.. As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines scheduled 15 daily flights as an Alaska carrier to or from Portland International Airport and 15 daily flights as an Alaska carrier to or from Seattle International Airport. As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines scheduled ten daily flights as an US Airways Express carrier to or from Phoenix International Airport.

As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines and ExpressJet scheduled the daily flights as a United or Continental Express carrier: 572 flights to or from Houston International Airport, 486 flights to or from Chicago O’Hare International Airport, 412 flights to or from Denver International Airport, 306 flights to or from San Francisco International Airport, 284 flights to or from Los Angeles International Airport, 214 flights to or from Newark International Airport, 148 flights to or from Washington Dulles International Airport, 128 flights to or from Cleveland International Airport and 64 flights to or from other airports. As of December 31, 2011, it operated 17 CRJ200s for United under a pro-rate agreement. The Company also operated one CRJ200 under a pro-rate agreement with Delta, as of December 31, 2011.

SkyWest Airlines

SkyWest Airlines provides regional jet and turboprop service primarily located in the midwestern and western United States. SkyWest Airlines offered approximately 1,650 daily scheduled departures as of December 31, 2011, of which approximately 1,110 were United Express flights, 500 were Delta Connection flights, 30 were Alaksa-coded flights and 10 were US Airways Express flights. SkyWest Airlines’ operations are conducted from hubs located in Chicago (O’Hare), Denver, Los Angeles, Houston, Portland, Seattle, Phoenix, San Francisco and Salt Lake City. SkyWest Airlines’ fleet as of December 31, 2011 consisted of 21 CRJ900s, all of which were flown for Delta; 96 CRJ700s, of which 70 were flown for United, 21 were flown for Del ta and five were flown for Alaska; 153 CRJ200s, of which 82 ! were flown! for United, 61 were flown for Delta, eight were in preparation for service under a code-share agreement with US Airways and two were flown for US Airways; and 45 Brasilia turboprops, of which 35 were flown for United and 10 were flown for Delta.

As of December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines was conducting its Delta Connection operations pursuant to the terms of an Amended and Restated Delta Connection Agreement, which obligates Delta to compensate SkyWest Airlines for its direct costs associated with operating Delta Connection flights, plus a payment based on block hours flown (the SkyWest Airlines Delta Connection Agreement). SkyWest Airlines’ United code-share operations are conducted under a United Express Agreement, pursuant to which SkyWest Airlines is paid primarily on a fee-per-completed block hour and departure basis, plus a margin based on performance incentives (the SkyWest Airlines United Express Agreement). During December 31, 2011, SkyWest Airlines ent ered into code-share agreements with Alaska and US Airways, pursuant to which SkyWest Airlines is paid primarily on a fee-per-completed block hour and departure basis, plus a fixed margin per aircraft each month.

ExpressJet

ExpressJet provides regional jet service principally in the United States, primarily from hubs located in Atlanta, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago (O’Hare), Denver, Houston, Newark and Washington Dulles. ExpressJet offered more than 2,100 daily scheduled departures as of December 31, 2011, of which approximately 650 were Delta Connection flights and 1,450 were Continental Express or United Express flights. As of December 31, 2011, the combined fleet of ExpressJet consisted of 10 CRJ900s, which were flown for Delta, 46 CRJ700s,which were flown for Delta, 113 CRJ200s, 99 of, which were flown for Delta and 14 of, which were flown for United and 242 ERJ145s, which were flown for United or Continental.

Under the terms of a Second Amended and Restated Delta Connection Agreement exec! uted betw! een Delta and Atlantic Southeast and to, which ExpressJet is a party (the ExpressJet Delta Connection Agreement), Delta has agreed to compensate ExpressJet for its direct costs associated with operating Delta Connection flights, plus, if ExpressJet completes a certain minimum percentage of its Delta Connection flights, a specified margin on such costs. Under the ExpressJet Delta Connection Agreement, excess margins over certain percentages must be returned to or shared with Delta, depending on various conditions. ExpressJet’s Continental and United code-share operations are conducted under a Capacity Purchase Agreement between ExpressJet and Continental (the Continental CPA) and two United Express Agreements between ExpressJet and United (collectively, the ExpressJet United Express Agreements), pursuant to, which ExpressJet is paid by Continental or United, as applicable, primarily on a fee-per-completed block hour and departure basis, plus a margin based on performance ince ntives.

The Company competes with Air Wisconsin Airlines Corporation, American Airlines, Inc. Delta Air Lines, Inc. Compass Airlines, Alaska Air Group, Inc. Mesa Air Group, Inc., Pinnacle Airlines Corp., Republic Airways Holdings Inc. and Trans State Airlines, Inc.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Michele Lerner, The Motley Fool]

    Alan Diaz/APAmerican Airlines did better at staying on schedule last year than it did in 2012, when it accused pilots of a work slowdown. DALLAS — A big drop in customer complaints helped U.S. airlines post their best ratings ever even though more flights were late and more bags were mishandled, according to a report released Monday by university researchers. Virgin America topped the ratings, and three regional airlines scored at the bottom. Among the four biggest airlines, Delta Air Lines (DAL) ranked best followed by Southwest (LUV), American (AAL) and United (UAL), according to researchers from Wichita State University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. The researchers have graded airlines since 1991 on government figures for on-time performance, mishandled bags, bumping passengers, and complaints filed with the U.S. Department of Transportation. Their key findings: On-Time Performance: Airlines operated 78.4 percent of their flights on time in 2013, down from 81.8 percent in 2012. Best: Hawaiian Airlines (HA); worst: American Eagle. Only two airlines improved: American Airlines and United. Bag Handling: The rate of lost, stolen or delayed bags rose 5 percent. Best: Virgin America; worst: American Eagle. Bumping: The rate of bumping passengers from flights fell 8 percent. Best: JetBlue Airways (JBLU); worst: SkyWest (SKYW). Complaints: Consumer complaints to the government dropped 15 percent in 2013 after rising 20 percent the year before. Best: Southwest Airlines; worst: Frontier (RJET). One of the report’s authors, Wichita State business professor Dean Headley, credited the drop in complaints partly to United Airlines. The company suffered several computer-network outages and grounded hundreds of flights in 2012 when it combined the United and Continental computer networks after a merger, but “got their act together” in 2013, he said. Headley said the drop in complaints might also reflect “a certain amount of resignation” that “it’s neve

  • [By Paul Quintaro]

    Shares of Delta Air (NYSE: DAL) are down 3.6 percent at last check, shares of United Continental (NYSE: UAL) are down 3.8 percent, US Air (NYSE: LCC) shares down 2.8 percent, shares of Southwest (NYSE: LUV) down 2 percent, JetBlue (NASDAQ: JBLU) shares down 2 percent and shares of SkyWest (NASDAQ: SKYW) down nearly 4 percent.

  • [By DAILYFINANCE]

    Lynne Sladky/AP WASHINGTON — U.S. airlines scored their second best performance last year in the more than two decades that researchers have been measuring airline quality, with Virgin America the leader, says an annual report released Monday. The report ranked the 14 largest U.S. airlines based on on-time arrivals, mishandled bags, consumer complaints and passengers who were bought tickets but were turned away because flights were over booked. Airline performance in 2012 was the second highest in the 23 years that Wichita State University at Omaha in Nebraska and Purdue University in Indiana have tracked the performance of airlines. The airline’s best year was 2011. Virgin America, headquartered in Burlingame, Calif., did the best job on baggage handling and had the second-lowest rate of passengers denied seats due to overbookings. United Airlines (UAL), whose consumer complaint rate nearly doubled last year, had the worst performance. United has merged with Continental Airlines, but has had rough spots in integrating the operations of the two carriers. The number of complaints consumers filed with the Department of Transportation overall surged by one-fifth last year to 11,445 complaints, up from 9,414 in 2011. “Over the 20 some year history we’ve looked at it, this is still the best time of airline performance we’ve ever seen,” said Dean Headley, a business professor at Wichita State University in Kansas, who has co-written the annual report. The best year was 2011, which was only slightly better than last year, he said. Despite those improvements, it isn’t surprising that passengers are getting grumpier, Headley said. Carriers keep shrinking the size of seats in order to stuff more people into planes. Empty middle seats that might provide a little more room have vanished. And more people who have bought tickets are being turned away because flights are overbooked. “The way airlines have taken 130-seat airplanes and expanded them to 150 seats to sque

  • [By Asit Sharma]

    What a difference a mega-order makes! Recently, I discussed Embraer’s (NYSE: ERJ  ) disappointing first quarter in light of its long-term prospects. At the time, I put forward that if Embraer could add another $1 billion-$2 billion in orders to its backlog, a missing puzzle piece would fall into place, making this company a persuasive investment candidate. Last week’s announcement of a significant order from regional airline SkyWest, (NASDAQ: SKYW  ) , provides a $4.1 billion jigsaw cutout to complete Embraer’s picture.  

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Southwest Airlines Co (LUV)

Southwest Airlines Co., incorporated on March 9, 1967, operates Southwest Airlines, a passenger airline, which provides scheduled air transportation in the United States. As of December 31, 2011, the Company was serving 72 cities in 37 states throughout the United States. During the year ended December 31, 2011, the Company added addition services in two new states and three new cities: Charleston, South Carolina; Greenville-Spartanburg, South Carolina; and Newark, New Jersey. Southwest provides point-to-point. On May 2, 2011, the Company acquired AirTran Holdings, Inc. (AirTran).

AirTran’s route system provides hub-and-spoke, rather than point-to-point, service, with approximately half of AirTran’s flights originating or terminating at its hub in Atlanta, Georgia. AirTran also serves a range of markets with non-stop service from bases of operation in Baltimore, Maryland; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Orlando, Florida. As of December 31, 2011, AirTran was serv ing 68 United States and near-international destinations, including San Juan, Puerto Rico; Cancun, Mexico; Montego Bay, Jamaica; Nassau, The Bahamas; Oranjestad, Aruba; Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, and Bermuda. As of January 31, 2012, AirTran served 65 destinations. During 2011, approximately 71% of Southwest’s customers flew non-stop, and Southwest’s average aircraft trip stage length was 664 miles with an average duration of approximately 1.8 hours.

As of December 31, 2011, Southwest offered 25 weekday roundtrips from Dallas Love Field to Houston Hobby, 13 weekday roundtrips from Phoenix to Las Vegas, 13 weekday roundtrips from Burbank to Oakland, and 12 weekday roundtrips from Los Angeles International to Oakland. Southwest offers connecting service opportunities from over 60 Southwest cities to different Volaris airports in Mexico including Aguascalientes, Guadalajara, Mexico City (MEX), Mexico City-Toluca (TLC), Morelia, and Zacatecas. The Company’ s International Connect portal conducts two separate transac! tions: one with Southwest’s reservation system and one with Volaris’s reservation system.

Southwest bundles fares into three categories: Wanna Get Away, Anytime, and Business Select. Wanna Get Away fares are lowest fares. Business Select fares are refundable and changeable, and funds may be applied toward future travel on Southwest. Business Select fares also include additional perks, such as priority boarding, a frequent flyer point multiplier, priority security and ticket counter access in select airports, and one complimentary adult beverage coupon for the day of travel. The Company’s Internet Website, southwest.com, is the avenue for Southwest Customers to purchase tickets online. During 2011, southwest.com accounted for approximately 78% of all Southwest bookings. During 2011, approximately 84% of Southwest’s Passenger revenues came through its Website, including revenues from SWABIZ, the Company’s business travel reservation Web page.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Michele Lerner, The Motley Fool]

    Alan Diaz/APAmerican Airlines did better at staying on schedule last year than it did in 2012, when it accused pilots of a work slowdown. DALLAS — A big drop in customer complaints helped U.S. airlines post their best ratings ever even though more flights were late and more bags were mishandled, according to a report released Monday by university researchers. Virgin America topped the ratings, and three regional airlines scored at the bottom. Among the four biggest airlines, Delta Air Lines (DAL) ranked best followed by Southwest (LUV), American (AAL) and United (UAL), according to researchers from Wichita State University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. The researchers have graded airlines since 1991 on government figures for on-time performance, mishandled bags, bumping passengers, and complaints filed with the U.S. Department of Transportation. Their key findings: On-Time Performance: Airlines operated 78.4 percent of their flights on time in 2013, down from 81.8 percent in 2012. Best: Hawaiian Airlines (HA); worst: American Eagle. Only two airlines improved: American Airlines and United. Bag Handling: The rate of lost, stolen or delayed bags rose 5 percent. Best: Virgin America; worst: American Eagle. Bumping: The rate of bumping passengers from flights fell 8 percent. Best: JetBlue Airways (JBLU); worst: SkyWest (SKYW). Complaints: Consumer complaints to the government dropped 15 percent in 2013 after rising 20 percent the year before. Best: Southwest Airlines; worst: Frontier (RJET). One of the report’s authors, Wichita State business professor Dean Headley, credited the drop in complaints partly to United Airlines. The company suffered several computer-network outages and grounded hundreds of flights in 2012 when it combined the United and Continental computer networks after a merger, but “got their act together” in 2013, he said. Headley said the drop in complaints might also reflect “a certain amount of resignation” that “it’s neve

  • [By Asit Sharma]

    Earnings and valuation continue to look attractive
    Alaska Airlines continues to impress investors with each earnings report. In its most recent filing for Q4 2013, the company reported record earnings of $78 million, a 68% increase over the prior year’s quarter. The positive earnings were driven primarily by a 7% increase in revenue. When a company can increase earnings so significantly, it can offset a rise in the stock in terms of relative valuation, and we see this phenomenon at work with Alaska Airlines. When we reviewed the company’s stock in November, ALK traded at 11.3 times trailing 12-month earnings. Since then, even after its price appreciation of more than one-fourth of its value, the airline’s P/E ratio has remained in the same ballpark, at 13.0. This compares favorably to the peer group we previously compared ALK to. Currently, Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV  ) trades at 22.5 trailing 12-month earnings, and the P/E ratios of the rest of the group are as follows: Spirit Airlines — 25.3, Republic Airways Holdings — 19.1, and JetBlue Airways (NASDAQ: JBLU  ) — 17.6. Thus, relative to its competitors, Alaska still looks cheap.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA (NAS)

Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA is a Norway-based company active in the low-cost airline industry. It operates scheduled services with additional charter services. It has a route portfolio that stretches across Europe into North Africa and the Middle East, as well as Thailand and the US. The Company operates approximately 400 routes and over 120 destinations. It has a fleet of over 80 jet aircrafts, including Boeings 737-800, Boeings 787-8 Dreamliners, Boeings 737 MAX8 and Airbuses A320neo. It is the parent company of the Norwegian Group and operates through subsidiaries, including Norwegian Air Shuttle Polska Sp z o o, Norwegian Air Shuttle Sweden AB, Call Norwegian AS, NAS Asset Management Norway AS, among others. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By GURUFOCUS]

    EMC’s products – both hardware and software – are litearlly a geek’s wonderland alphabet soup, which include Storage Area Network (SAN), Network Attached Storage (NAS), Direct Attached Storage (DAS), Virtual SAN, All-Flash XtremIO, Atmos, Avamar,  Data Domain, Isilon, Pivotal, ViPR Software Defined Storgae, VMAX, VNX, VNXe, VPLEX, VSPEX (none of these are typos).  Information storage makes up 70% of revenues and virtualization 23% of revenues.  Products generate 55% of revenues.  Services generate 45% of revenues.  The Company’s gross profit split is approximaltey 67% data storage and 31% virtualization.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Indonesia Transport & Infrastructure Tbk PT (IATA)

PT Indonesia Transport & Infrastructure Tbk, formerly PT Indonesia Air Transport Tbk, is an Indonesia-based air transport service provider. The Company provides air transportation, hiring and/or leasing aircrafts, repairs and maintenance of aircrafts and trading of aviation technical equipment and related spare parts. It also provides medical evacuation services, tourism and scheduled flight services to several routes in central and eastern Indonesia. The Company operates various types of fixed wing aircrafts and helicopters, such as EC 155 B1, AS 365 Dauphin N2 twin turbine helicopter, Beechcraft 1900D, ATR 42-300, ATR 42-500 and Fokker 50. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Shereen El Gazzar]

    The forecast, from the International Air Transport Association (IATA), sees the Middle East and the Asia-Pacific region with the strongest international passenger growth, with a compound average growth rate of 6.3% and 5.7% respectively.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: China Eastern Airlines Corp Ltd (CEA)

China Eastern Airlines Corporation Limited (China Eastern), incorporated on April 14, 1985, is an air carriers operating in the People’s Republic of China. As of December 31, 2010, the Company served a route network that covers 182 domestic and foreign cities in 30 countries. It operates from Shanghai’s Hongqiao International Airport and Pudong International Airport. During the year ended December 31, 2010, its flights accounted for 52.2% and 37.9% of all the flight traffic at Hongqiao International Airport and Pudong International Airport, respectively. During 2010, it accounted for approximately 31.1% of the total passenger traffic volume and 19% of the total freight volume on routes to and from Shanghai. As of December 31, 2010, it had a fleet of 355 aircraft, including 337 passenger jets each with a seating capacity of over 100 seats and 18 freighters.

Passenger Operations

During 2010, the Company operated approximately 9,600 scheduled fl ights per week, excluding charter flights, serving a route network that covers 182 domestic and foreign cities in 30 countries. During 2010, its domestic routes generated approximately 71.5% of its passenger revenues. Its heavily traveled domestic routes link Shanghai to the commercial and business centers of the People’s Republic of China, such as Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen. During 2010, it also operated approximately 361 flights per week to and from Hong Kong, originating from Shanghai and 16 major cities in eastern, northern and western the People’s Republic of China. During 2010, it operated approximately 103 flights per week between mainland China and Taiwan. During 2010, its regional routes accounted for approximately 5.4% of its passenger revenues. During 2010, it operated approximately 1,079 international flights per week, serving 60 cities in 29 countries, linking Shanghai to cities in Asian and Southeast Asian countries, such as Japan, Korea, India, Singap ore, Thailand and Bangladesh and locations in Europe, the Un! ited States and Australia.

During 2010, the Company re-started its Shanghai to London and Shanghai to Moscow routes. During 2010, revenues derived from its operations on international routes accounted for approximately 23.2% of its passenger revenues. During 2010, revenues derived from its operations to and from Japan accounted for approximately 7.7% of its passenger revenues and approximately 33.4% of its international passenger revenues. Its international and regional flights and a portion of its domestic flights either originate or terminate in Shanghai, the central hub of its route network. Its operations in Shanghai are conducted at Hongqiao International Airport and Pudong International Airport. On March 16, 2010, it moved its operations at Hongqiao International Airport to the terminal two of Hongqiao International Airport. It operates its flights through three hubs located in eastern, northwestern and southwestern China, namely Shanghai, Xi’an and Kun ming, respectively.

Cargo and Mail Operations

The Company’s cargo and mail business utilizes the same route network used by its passenger airline business. It carries cargo and mail on its freight aircraft, as well as in available cargo space on its passenger aircraft. Its cargo and mail routes are international routes. As of December 31, 2010, it had seven MD-11F, four B777F and two B757-200F freight aircraft under operating leases for cargo and mail operations. It also has three Airbus A300-600R aircraft, as well as two Boeing 747-400ER freighters for its cargo operations.

The Company competes with Air China Limited, China Southern Airlines Company Limited, Hong Kong Dragon Airlines Limited, Cathay Pacific Airways, Thai Airways International, Singapore Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, American Airlines, Air Canada, Delta, Alitalia, Air France-KLM Group, Asiana Airlines, Korean Air, Virgin Atlantic Airways, British Airways , Lufthansa German Airlines, Aeroflot and Qantas Airways.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Belinda Cao]

    The Bloomberg China-US Equity Index (CH55BN) of the most-traded Chinese companies in the U.S. slumped 3.4 percent last week to a seven-month low of 89.04. The gauge traded at 13.5 times estimated earnings, 3.6 percent below the S&P’s valuation, data compiled by Bloomberg show. China Southern Airlines Co. (ZNH) and China Eastern Airlines Corp. (CEA) lost more than 6 percent April 5, while Home Inns & Hotels Management Inc. (HMIN) tumbled 16 percent in the week.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Ryanair Holdings PLC (RYA)

Ryanair Holdings plc (Ryanair Holdings), is a holding company for Ryanair Limited (Ryanair). Ryanair operates a low-cost, scheduled-passenger airline serving short-haul, point-to-point routes between Ireland, the United Kingdom, Continental Europe, and Morocco. As of June 30, 2012, the Company offered approximately over 1,500 scheduled short-haul flights per day serving approximately 160 airports largely throughout Europe with an operating fleet of 294 aircraft flying approximately 1,500 routes. Ryanair sells seats on a one-way basis. The Company also holds a 29.8% interest in Aer Lingus Group plc. As of June 30, 2012, Ryanair’s operating fleet was composed of 294 Boeing 737-800 aircraft, each having 189 seats. Ryanair’s fleet totaled 294 Boeing 737-800s at March 31, 2012. As of June 30, 2012, Ryanair owned and operated four Boeing 737-800 full flight simulators for pilot training. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Inyoung Hwang]

    Ryanair Holdings Plc (RYA), the discount airline operator that’s the second-biggest stock in Ireland’s ISEQ index, declined 1.7 percent to 7.23 euros in Dublin. Kerry Group, a supplier of food ingredients, sank 1.4 percent to 45.24 euros.

10 Best Airline Stocks For 2014: Gogo Inc (GOGO)

Gogo Inc incorporated on December 14, 2009, is a holding company. The Company operates through its two operating subsidiaries, Gogo LLC and Aircell Business Aviation Services LLC. The Company provides in-flight connectivity and wireless in-cabin digital entertainment solutions. It provide turnkey solutions for passengers to extend their connected lifestyles to the aircraft cabin. It operates in two segments: commercial aviation (CA) and business aviation (BA). Its CA business provides in-flight connectivity and digital entertainment solutions to commercial airline passengers through their personal Wi-Fi enabled devices.

The Company provides Gogo Connectivity to passengers to nine North American airlines that provide Internet connectivity to their passengers. It provide Gogo Connectivity to passengers on Delta Air Lines, American Airlines, Virgin America, Alaska Airlines, US Airways, Frontier Airlines and Air Tran Airways. It also provide Gogo Connectivity to p assengers on a small number of aircraft operated by United Airlines and Air Canada. As of September 30, 2011, the Company had equipped 1,177 commercial aircraft, representing approximately 85% of Internet-enabled North American commercial aircraft, which were operated on more than 4,200 daily flights.

The Company’s BA segment sells equipment and provides services for in-flight Internet connectivity and other voice and data communications under its Gogo Biz and Aircell branded products and services. BA’s customers include original equipment manufacturers of private jet aircraft such as Gulfstream, Cessna, Hawker Beechcraft, Bombardier, Dassault, Embraer, NetJets, Flexjets, Flight Options and CitationAir. It sells equipment for three of the primary connectivity network options in the business aviation market: Gogo Biz, through which it delivers broadband Internet connectivity over its (air-to-ground )ATG network, and the Iridium and Inmarsat SwiftBroadband sat ellite networks. As of September 30, 2011, the Company had m! ore than 700 Gogo Biz systems in operation and more than 4,600 aircraft with Iridium satellite communications systems in operation, and it has sold more than 100 Inmarsat SwiftBroadband systems. It provides in-flight broadband connectivity across the contiguous United States and portions of Alaska through 3 MHz of FCC-licensed ATG spectrum and its network of cell sites.

Through its Gogo platform, the Company provides passengers with a convenient and easy way to access the Internet, view video content, send and receive email and instant messages, and access corporate VPNs on Gogo-equipped commercial aircraft. It provides Internet access through Gogo Connectivity, on-demand streaming video offerings through Gogo Vision and access to a variety of free entertainment and service offerings, customized for each airline, through Gogo Signature Services.

The Company competes with Panasonic Avionics, Row 44, OnAir, LiveTV and Thales.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By John Udovich]

    Jim Cramer, the host of CNBC’s Mad Money, recently touted ViaSat, Inc (NASDAQ: VSAT) as an in-flight WiFi or satellite communications related play, meaning its worth taking a closer look at the stock along with the performance of small cap in-flight WiFi provider Gogo Inc (NASDAQ: GOGO) and small cap satellite communications firm Iridium Communications Inc (NASDAQ: IRDM). I should mention that I have written about Gogo Inc in the past (Small Cap Gogo Inc (GOGO): Is There Turbulence Ahead? IRDM and Is In-flight WiFi Stock Gogo, Inc. (GOGO) the Next Iridium?) and Cramer also touched on some of the differences between the in-flight wifi service offerings of both. Cramer also interviewed ViaSat, Inc’s CEO who said they had been waiting for a new satellite to “disrupt” the market.

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Gogo (NASDAQ: GOGO) shares jumped 8.46% to $25.90 in pre-market trading after the company reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results.

    Posted-In: PreMarket GainersNews Pre-Market Outlook Markets Movers

  • [By Jake L’Ecuyer]

    Shares of Gogo (NASDAQ: GOGO) were on the rise as well, gaining 11.33 percent to $24.12, despite little news on the name.

    AeroVironment (NASDAQ: AVAV) was also up, gaining 19.50 percent to $37.92 after the company reported upbeat Q3 earnings.