International Air Travel (Passenger and Freight) Rebounds in May to Above Pre-Recession Levels

Geneva – “The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced this week that international scheduled traffic statistics for May which showed an 11.7% increase in passenger traffic and a 34.3% jump in freight demand compared to May 2009.

“Demand rebounded strongly in May following the impact of the European volcanic ash fiasco in April. Passenger traffic is now 1% above pre-recession levels, while the freight market is 6% bigger,” said Giovanni Bisignani, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

Strong traffic growth is contributing to a strengthening industry bottom line. Airlines are expected to post a $2.5 billion profit in 2010 in a dramatic turnaround from the $9.9 billion lost in 2009. “This is good news, but it is only a 0.5% margin. We are still a long way from sustainable profitability,” said Bisignani.”

MP: In a related post, Scott Grannis reports today that the Harpex Shipping Index (a measure of rates charged by container ships in the North Atlantic) is showing ongoing improvements this year, and has recently reached the highest level since 2008.

In a flurry of amazing posts today with positive economics news (it’s hard to keep up with him!), Scott also reports that: a) the number of persons receiving unemployment compensation insurance has dropped by 25% since the high in 2008 (link), b) historically low mortgage rates and cheap home prices create great opportunities for homebuyers (link), c) construction spending has stabilized (link), and d) the manufacturing sector remains strong (link).

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About Mark J. Perry 262 Articles

Affiliation: University of Michigan

Dr. Mark J. Perry is a professor of economics and finance in the School of Management at the Flint campus of the University of Michigan.

He holds two graduate degrees in economics (M.A. and Ph.D.) from George Mason University in Washington, D.C. and an MBA degree in finance from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.

Since 1997, Professor Perry has been a member of the Board of Scholars for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a nonpartisan research and public policy institute in Michigan.

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