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Minor U.S. Carriers Take Up Slack

February 10, 2003

Inevitably, and perhaps rightly, the plight of the U.S. majors continues to equate to that of the entire U.S. market, thereby depressing values. Yet the lesser known names in the U.S. air transport are acquiring aircraft, contrasting with the perception that weakness is endemic in all but the regional jet sector. Interstate Jet has wet leased a B757, a type that is sometimes erroneously seen as having no market, to start new services between Los Angeles and the East Coast. Air Florida announced its intention to start services in mid 2003 with three MD80s, a B757 and B767. Allegiant Air is to lease two MD83s for services from Las Vegas. Viva Airlines is set to acquire three B727s to start a new service. While the demand generated by such new carriers pale against the disposal of aircraft by the majors, a market for aircraft does exist, even in the U.S.

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