Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now


This global leader has experienced a slump in growth and sales, however, Royston Wild of The Motley Fool UK, thinks a detailed evaluation is required before deciding if the cons outweigh the pros.

Making stock market selections are never black-and-white decisions, and investors often have to plow through a mountain of conflicting arguments before coming to a sound conclusion.

Today I am looking at Unilever (LSS:ULVR) (NY:UL) and assessing whether the positives surrounding the firm’s investment case outweigh the negatives.


Emerging markets continue sliding

Unilever spooked the markets in September when it warned of slowing demand in emerging markets, a theme which was underlined in last month’s interims.

The household goods leviathan saw underlying sales rise 8.8% during January-September, but during the third quarter these rose just 5.9%, illustrating a significant downshift from growth of 10.3% seen during the first half of the year.

Near-term recovery expected

Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now: Controladora Vuela Compania de Aviacion SAB de CV (VLRS)


Controladora Vuela Compania de Aviacion SAB de CV (Volaris Aviation Holding Company) is a Mexico-based company principally engaged in the airline passenger transportation industry. The Company is a law-cost carrier airline. Controladora Vuela Compania de Aviacion SAB de CV offers direct, point-to-point flights. The Company serves through secondary, lower cost airports and provides a single class of service. The Company utilizes such aircraft as the Airbus A319 and A320 families, among others. The Company has such subsidiaries as Comercializadora Volaris SA de CV, Servicios Corporativos Volaris SA de CV, Concesionaria Vuela Compania de Aviacion SAPI de CV, Deutsche Bank Mexico SA Trust 1484, among others. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By John Udovich]

    When most American investors think of discount airline stocks, they probably think of relatively large capped Southwest Airlines Co (NYSE: LUV) or sort of small cap JetBlue Airways Corporation (NASDAQ: JBLU) rather than small cap Controladora Vuela Co Avcn SA CV (NYSE: VLRS) which owns Volaris – a discount airline serving the Mexican market. However, any investor who has read Benjamin Graham’s Intelligent Investor might want to remember his sage advice about avoiding airline stocks – mainly because airlines were such a new and unproven sector that had yet to make money. But could Controladora Vuela Co Avcn SA CV actually be an airline stock worth owning?

Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now: Energie Holdings Inc (ELED)


Energie Holdings Inc, formerly Alas Aviation Corporation, incorporated on June 10, 2013, is in the process of acquiring, assembling and operating passenger airlines, air cargo and related ground service operators. The Company’s business model includes purchasing low-scale regional operators then assembles and integrates them as subsidiaries. Corporacion Ygnus Air, S.A. (Cygnus) is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company. It is engaged in acquisition discussions with several operators throughout Europe and around the world.

Cygnus is an aeronautical company is an integrated provider of air cargo transportation specializing in medium and long-range cargo routes. Cygnus operates a fleet of two Boeing 757-200PCF cargo jets to Europe and Africa. Cygnus has managed multi-plane operations, carrying both freight and passengers throughout Spain, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas.


Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Peter Graham]

    Small cap stocks Wi-Fi Wireless Inc (OTCMKTS: WFWL), Energie Holdings Inc (OTCMKTS: ELED) and Trend Exploration, Inc (OTCMKTS: TRDX) surged 47.06%, 25% and 12.50%, respectively, last Friday. However, none of these small cap stocks appear to be the subject of paid promotions or investor relations activities – something that could be a good thing for investors who are not traders. Keeping that in mind, are these three small cap stocks going to be winners over the long term? Here is a closer look to help you decide on an investing or trading strategy:

Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now: 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 Adam Levine-Weinberg]

    Like other regional airlines, Republic Airways Holdings (NASDAQ: RJET  ) has been hard hit by the growing U.S. pilot shortage. However, while rivals such as SkyWest (NASDAQ: SKYW  ) are struggling to stay in the black in this challenging environment, Republic’s focus on more-profitable large regional jets is allowing it to boost earnings.

  • [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

Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now: Latam Airlines Group SA (LFL)


LAN Airlines S.A. (LAN), incorporated in 1983, is the international and domestic passenger airline in Latin America and the cargo operator in the region. As of February 9, 2012, LAN and its affiliates provided domestic and international passenger services in Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Argentina and Colombia and cargo operations through the use of belly space on its passenger flights and cargo freighter aircraft through its cargo airlines in Chile, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico. LAN and its affiliates offered passenger flights to 15 destinations in Chile, 59 destinations in other South American countries, 15 destinations in other Latin American countries and the Caribbean, five destinations in the United States, two destinations in Europe and four destinations in the South Pacific and, through various codeshare agreements, service to 25 additional destinations in North America, 16 additional destinations in Europe, 27 additional destinations in Latin America and the Caribbean (inc luding Mexico), and two destinations in Asia, as of February 9, 2012. LAN and its affiliates provide cargo service to all of their passenger destinations and to 20 additional destinations served only by freighter aircraft. LAN also offers other services, such as ground handling, courier, logistics and maintenance. LAN and its affiliates operated a fleet, with 135 passenger aircraft and 14 cargo aircraft as of December 31, 2011. On February 15, 2011, Lan Pax Group S.A., subsidiary of Lan Airlines S.A. acquired 100% of Colombian society AEROASIS S.A.


LAN is primarily involved in the transportation of passengers and cargo. Its operations are carried out principally by Lan Airlines and also by a number of different subsidiaries. As of February 28, 2011, in the passenger business the Company operated through six main airlines: Lan Airlines, Transporte Aereo S.A. (which does business under the name Lan Express), Lan Peru S.A. (Lan Peru), Aerolane Lineas Aereas Naciona les del Ecuador S.A. (Lan Ecuador), Lan Argentina S.A. (Lan ! Argentina, previously Aero 2000 S.A.) and the Aerovias de Integracion Regional, Aires S.A. (Aires). As of February 28, 2011, the Company held a 99.9% interest in Lan Express through direct and indirect interests, a 70.0% interest in Lan Peru through direct and indirect interests, a 71.9% indirect interest in Lan Ecuador, a 99.0% indirect interest in Lan Argentina and a 94.99% indirect interest in Aires (a Colombian entity which was acquired on November 26, 2010). Its cargo operations are carried out by a number of companies, including Lan Airlines and Lan Cargo. As of February 28, 2011, the Company held a 69.2% interest in Aero Transportes Mas de Carga S.A. de C.V. (MasAir), through direct and indirect participations, a 73.3% interest in ABSA through direct and indirect participations, and a 90.0% interest in LANCO through direct and indirect participations. In the cargo business, the Company markets itself primarily under the Lan Cargo brand. In addition to its air transpor tation activities, the Company provides a series of ancillary services. It offers handling services, courier services and logistics, small package and express door-to-door services through Lan Airlines and various subsidiaries.


Passenger Operations

As of February 28, 2011, the Company operated passenger airlines in Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Argentina and Colombia. As of February 28, 2011, our passenger operations were performed through airlines in Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Argentina and Colombia where we operate both domestic and international services. As of February 28, 2011, the Company’s network consisted of 15 destinations in Chile, 14 destinations in Peru, four destinations in Ecuador, 14 destinations in Argentina, 24 destinations in Colombia, 14 destinations in other Latin American countries and the Caribbean, five destinations in the United States, one destination in Canada, three destinations in Europe and four destinations in the South Pacific. Within Latin America, it has routes to and from Argentina, B! olivia, B! razil, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela. The Company also flies to a variety of international destinations outside Latin America, including Auckland, Fort Lauderdale, Frankfurt, Los Angeles, Madrid, Miami, Mount Pleasant (Falkland Islands), New York, Toronto, Papeete (Tahiti), Paris, San Francisco, and Sydney. In addition, as of February 28, 2011, through its various code-share agreements, the Company offered service to 25 additional destinations in North America, 16 additional destinations in Europe, 25 additional destinations in Latin America and the Caribbean (including Mexico), and two destinations in Asia. As of February 28, 2011, the Company operated scheduled international services from Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Argentina through Lan Airlines; Lan Express in Chile; Lan Peru in Peru; Lan Ecuador in Ecuador; Lan Argentina in Argentina and Aires in Colombia. Its international network combines the Company’s Chile an, Peruvian, Ecuadorian, Argentinean and Colombian affiliates. It provides long-haul services out of its four main hubs in Santiago, Lima, Guayaquil and Buenos Aires. It also provides regional services from Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Argentina.


Cargo Operations

The Company’s cargo business operates on the same network used by the passenger airlines business, which is supplemented by freighter-only operations. The Company carries cargo for a variety of customers, including other international air carriers, freight-forwarding companies, export oriented companies and individual consumers. As of February 28, 2011, the Company operated a fleet of 140 aircraft, comprised of 126 passenger aircraft and 14 cargo aircraft.

The Company competes with UPS, FedEx, Centurion, Transportes Aereos Mercantiles Panamericanos S.A., Polar Air, Cargolux, Lufthansa Cargo, Martinair and Air France-KLM.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    LATAM Airlines Group SA (NYSE: LFL) is expected to post its Q1 earnings at $0.20 per share on revenue of $3.42 billion.

    Gladstone Investment (NASDAQ: GAIN) is projected to post its Q4 earnings at $0.17 per share on revenue of $8.90 million.

  • [By Laura Brodbeck]

    Notable earnings releases expected on Monday include:

    LAN Chile S.A. (NYSE: LFL) is expected to report fourth quarter EPS of $0.24 on revenue of $3.50 billion, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.02 on revenue of $3.48 billion. JA Solar Holdings, Co. Ltd (NASDAQ: JASO) is expected to report EPS of $0.03 on revenue of $291.75 million, compared to last year’s loss of $2.65 per share on revenue of $268.09 million. Sterling Construction Company, Inc (NASDAQ: STRL) is expected to report a fourth quarter loss of $1.47 per share on revenue of $153.07 million, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.18 on revenue of $158.09 million.

    Economics

Top 5 Airline Stocks To Watch Right Now: Grupo Aeromexico SAB de CV (AEROMEX*)

Grupo Aeromexico SAB de CV is a Mexican holding company primarily engaged in the provision of passenger and cargo air transport services. It offers destinations in Mexico, the United States, Europe, Central and South America, Asia and Canada. It operates a fleet of over 110 aircrafts. The Company is primarily engaged in the passenger transportation segment, comprising regional, domestic and international routes, and package holidays; as well as in cargo transportation segment, handled mainly by its subsidiary Aeromexico Cargo. By its subsidiaries the Company is also engaged in real estate sector and in providing services to the aviation companies, including personnel training, management, and aircraft maintenance and modification. Its subsidiaries include Aerovias de Mexico SA de CV, Premier Loyalty & Marketing SAPI de CV, and Inmobiliaria Avenida Fuerza Aerea Mexicana 416 SA de CV, among others. In addition, it is a member of the SkyTeam airline alliance. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Jonathan Levin]

    Volaris became Mexico’s second publicly traded carrier, after larger competitor Grupo Aeromexico SAB (AEROMEX*) sold stock in 2011. Airlines in Mexico have expanded into a void left when Cia. Mexicana de Aviacion, then largest based on passenger traffic, sought protection from creditors and ceased operations in 2010.