Making aircraft, good; flying them, less so

Further evidence of a surging civil aviation economy comesfrom systems supplier Goodrich. Overall, sales were up 16% at $2.03 billion andpre-tax profit gained 34.5% to $300 million, and for the full year Goodrichforecasts a 15% increase in large airliner original equipment sales, assumingBoeing 787 and 747-8 schedules are maintained.

Meanwhile, on the operating side of the equation things areless cheerful. The world’s mightiest – or at least biggest – airline,United-Continental, saw rising oil prices add $1 billion to its quarterly fuel billto slash pre-tax income by 22.5%to $660 million despite an 8.7% rise in operating revenue, to $10.2 billion. And,earlier this month, American Airlines parent AMR swung to a $162 millionpre-tax loss for the third quarter, reversing a $143 million profit recordedthe year-prior, as its fuel bill rose 41% year-on-year.

Are both ofthese trends sustainable?

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