Despite its misgivings, a spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association - which represents American Airlines pilots - says the union still supports the proposed merger between American (AAMRQ) and US Airways (LCC), following meetings the union held with AMR CEO Tom Horton today. LCC has been pushing for a merger between the two carriers all year, and with the support of all its unions, the two airlines combined would be on par with current leader United Continental (UAL) in scope.
Airline stocks are on watch after the WSJreports that American Airlines (AAMRQ.PK) plans to step up merger talks in the coming weeks and will initiate the process by sending non-disclosure agreements to select carriers and P-E firms. Delta Air Lines (DAL -3.5%) and United Continental (UAL -1.1%) are the companies considered to be in the hunt along with US Airways (LCC +2.1%).
Could AMR's problems become US Airways' (LCC) salvation? US Airways CEO Doug Parker has long sought a merger with one of the Big Three carriers, and Ted Reed speculates that AMR's current plight would seem to lend itself to a renewed effort. "At this point, American's market cap is clearly a small enough number for a takeover bid," Avondale's Bob McAdoo muses.