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Southwest (LUV) Recalls 209 Pilots As Travel Demand Improves

Zacks.com logo Zacks.com 4/6/2021

Per a Reuters report, Southwest Airlines Co. LUV has recalled 209 pilots from a voluntary extended leave program as it prepares to meet the anticipated increase in travel demand during the summer season. With more Americans getting vaccinated, airlines are increasingly optimistic about the uptick in air-travel demand.

The Reuters report states that pilots will resume active status from Jun 1 and complete the necessary requalification training requirements before they start flying.

Last month, Southwest, carrying a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold), announced a major summer service expansion. It will begin flights to Myrtle Beach, SC from Baltimore, MD; Chicago, IL; Nashville, TN; Dallas, TX and Pittsburgh, PA in May. From June onward, the carrier will connect Myrtle Beach with Atlanta, GA; Columbus, OH and Indianapolis, IN.

Southwest Airlines Co. Price

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Additionally, the carrier will begin nonstop services to 37 cities from Austin, TX this summer. The airline’s May schedule also includes other nonstop services to prominent destinations. The boosted summer service is aimed at addressing “closer-in demand for leisure destinations”.

Thanks to the improved travel demand scenario as the economy continues to recover, United Airlines UAL, carrying a Zacks Rank #3, announced plans to resume pilot recruitment.

Key Picks

Some better-ranked stocks in the broader Transportation sector are USA Truck, Inc. USAK and Saia, Inc. SAIA. While USA Truck sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Saia carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Shares of USA Truck and Saia have rallied more than 100% and 73% in the past six months, respectively.

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