Southwest Airlines, the only carrier that Wall Street analysts love to love (or LUV?), announced today that it is deferring deliveries of 15 Boeing 737-700s. This is bad news for airlines. Very bad. I've polled my colleagues, who actually know a thing or two about the air transport industry, and no one can remember a time when market conditions forced Southwest to defer aircraft deliveries.
But even worse is the simultaneous announcement by Southwest on two of the steps it is taking to boost revenue: does anybody believe launching a new advertising campaign and revamping the boarding and seating method are the keys to turning things around??