(FORBES) — The airline industry likes to think it is having a renaissance, finally able to show consistent profits and return on investment just like any other industry and to avoid the regular warnings that “airline investing may be hazardous to your health.”
The latest statistics from Airlines for America, the leading airline trade group, show the industry is not quite where it wants to be. In a year-end report, the ten airlines that have reported full-year results for 2012 made a combined profit of $152 million on revenue of $143.4 billion. That works out to a profit margin around 0.1%. For each passenger they carried, U.S. airlines made a scant 21 cents.
Compared to leading U.S. companies, airline industry results were abysmal, A4A said.