30 Largest Airlines by Market Cap (and 20 Largest Listed Airport Operators) 2017

Airlines have notoriously been a terrible sector to invest in, being capital hungry and fiercely competitive among other hazard, but represent some of the many international brands most easily remembered by those who enjoy travel as much as I do.  Perhaps one reason we know their brands so well is because brand wars are so necessary in such a hyper-competitive industry.

For reference, below is a snapshot of the top 30 largest airlines by market cap (across major markets we trade) as of January 2017.  The average ROA of these airlines over the past 5 years has been about 2% and the latest debt/equity ratio is around 1.5.

RIC Name  USD Market Cap (Millions)
DAL Delta Air Lines Inc  $37,970
LUV Southwest Airlines Co  $31,580
AAL.O American Airlines Group Inc  $23,989
UAL United Continental Holdings Inc  $23,168
RYAAY.O Ryanair Holdings PLC  $18,306
0670.HK / CEA China Eastern Airlines Corp Ltd  $12,235
0753.HK Air China Ltd  $11,806
ICAG.L International Consolidated Airlines Group SA  $11,585
ALK Alaska Air Group Inc  $10,848
9201.T Japan Airlines Co Ltd  $10,610
9202.T ANA Holdings Inc  $9,534
1055.HK / ZNH China Southern Airlines Co Ltd  $8,683
SIAL.SI Singapore Airlines Ltd  $8,115
600221.SS Hainan Airlines Co Ltd  $8,048
JBLU.O JetBlue Airways Corp  $7,333
LHAG.DE / DLAKY.PK Deutsche Lufthansa AG  $6,224
0293.HK Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd  $5,276
LFL Latam Airlines Group SA  $5,106
EZJ.L easyJet plc  $4,834
QAN.AX Qantas Airways Ltd  $4,488
603885.SS JUNEYAO AIRLINES Co Ltd  $4,351
601021.SS Spring Airlines Co Ltd  $4,279
SAVE.O Spirit Airlines Inc  $4,028
CPA Copa Holdings SA  $3,874
HA.O Hawaiian Holdings Inc  $3,091
ALGT.O Allegiant Travel Co  $2,748
SKYW.O SkyWest Inc  $1,938
AIRF.PA / AFLYY.PK Air France KLM SA  $1,630
VAH.AX Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd  $1,449
VLRS.K Controladora Vuela Compania de Aviacion SAB de CV  $1,319

As a bonus, I also include here a list of the top 20 largest airport operators in the world by market cap.  By comparison with airlines, this sector has averaged 5.5% return on assets with a debt/equity ratio less than 0.5:

RIC Name  USD Market Cap (Millions)
AENA.MC Aena SA  $20,652
ADP.PA Aeroports de Paris SA  $10,593
SYD.AX Sydney Airport Holdings Ltd  $9,827
600009.SS Shanghai International Airport Co Ltd  $7,449
MIC Macquarie Infrastructure Corp  $6,656
FRAG.DE Fraport AG Frankfurt Airport Services Worldwide  $5,479
PAC Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico SAB de CV  $4,461
0694.HK Beijing Capital International Airport Co Ltd  $4,278
ASR Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste SAB de CV  $4,249
SATS.SI SATS Ltd  $3,848
BBA.L BBA Aviation PLC  $3,630
9706.T Japan Airport Terminal Co Ltd  $3,057
SIAE.SI Sia Engineering Company Ltd  $2,633
600004.SS Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport Co Ltd  $2,384
VIEV.VI Flughafen Wien AG  $2,079
OMAB.O Grupo Aeroportuario del Centro Norte SAB de CV  $1,432
GATE.S Gategroup Holding AG  $1,386
0044.HK Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering Co Ltd  $1,124
SAVE.MI Save SpA  $1,016
600897.SS Xiamen International Airport Co Ltd  $988

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