MarketPulse: Alaska Air Lifts off, Pushing Airlines Higher

0 – Alaska Air led airlines higher Wednesday, just days after Credit Suisse(SIX:CSGN) delivered an upbeat note on the industry, indicating there was more room on the runway for airlines to grow performance.

Credit Suisse said Monday that Alaska was its “top pick,” citing the airline’s efforts to ramp merger synergies will drive sector-high unit revenue growth, margin expansion and earnings growth in 2019. Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK) rose nearly 4%.

Having nearly completed its Virgin America integration milestones, Alaska Air’s focus will likely shift to “unlocking value through synergies and incremental revenue enhancements,” Credit Suisse analyst Jose Calado said.

“Performance started to inflect in the third quarter, and we see a compelling outlook into 2019,” Calado added.

The bank also recommended investors take a closer look at two legacy network carriers, Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), up more than 3%, and United Continental (NASDAQ:UAL), which rose 1.5%. Discount airline Spirit (NYSE:SAVE), which Credit Suisse initiated with a hold, rose 4%.

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