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Rivalry amongst European low cost airlines: Are shareholders enjoying the game?


  • Alves, Carlos F.
  • Barbot, Cristina


We develop a model of quantity and price competition for low cost airlines based on announcements of new routes and their impacts on the announcer and on its rival. We find that both firms’ profits may rise or fall as a result of an announcement of new routes, depending on launching costs for the announcer, and on whether market expansion or market substitution is dominant for the rival. We present an empirical study for two European low cost airlines that shows asymmetric behaviour; while EasyJet announcements have positive effects on Ryanair’s share price, the opposite is does not occur. This suggests that an airline’s reputation for reacting in response to rivals’ announcements may affect the stock market and may thus affect announcement behaviour.

Suggested Citation

  • Alves, Carlos F. & Barbot, Cristina, 2010. "Rivalry amongst European low cost airlines: Are shareholders enjoying the game?," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 16(6), pages 304-309.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jaitra:v:16:y:2010:i:6:p:304-309
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jairtraman.2010.03.003

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Sundaram, Anant K. & John, Teresa A. & John, Kose, 1996. "An empirical analysis of strategic competition and firm values The case of R&D competition," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(3), pages 459-486, March.
    2. Barbot, Cristina, 2006. "Low-cost airlines, secondary airports, and state aid: An economic assessment of the Ryanair–Charleroi Airport agreement," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 12(4), pages 197-203.
    3. Chan, Su Han & Martin, John D. & Kensinger, John W., 1990. "Corporate research and development expenditures and share value," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 255-276, August.
    4. Malkiel, Burton G, 1995. "Returns from Investing in Equity Mutual Funds 1971 to 1991," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(2), pages 549-572, June.
    5. Doukas, John & Switzer, Lorne, 1992. "The stock market's valuation of R&D spending and market concentration," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 95-114, May.
    6. Mason, Keith J. & Alamdari, F., 2007. "EU network carriers, low cost carriers and consumer behaviour: A Delphi study of future trends," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 13(5), pages 299-310.
    7. A. Craig MacKinlay, 1997. "Event Studies in Economics and Finance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 13-39, March.
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