American Airlines shares rebound on Monday, more New York flights to be suspended as COVID-19 cases surge

Over the past weekend, American Airlines Group Inc (AAL) announced that more flights in and out of New York City’s 3 key airports would be suspended until at least May 6th, as coronavirus cases continue to surge.

American Airlines shares closed higher for the fourth time in the past ten trading sessions on NASDAQ on Monday. The stock went up 1.17% ($0.11) to $9.50, after touching an intraday low at $9.12 and an intraday high at $9.93.

Shares of American Airlines Group have retreated 66.88% so far in 2020 compared with a 17.55% loss for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2019, American Airlines’ stock went down 10.68%, thus, it again underperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 28.88% gain.

The air carrier said it would operate a total of 13 daily flights from New York’s JFK and LaGuardia airports and New Jersey’s Newark airport between April 9th and May 6th. In comparison, the airline, on average, operated 271 daily flights across those 3 airports in April last year.

American Airlines also said that flights would only be operated between 10 a.m. ET and 6 p.m. ET as turn-only operations.

According to David Seymour, American Airlines’ senior vice president of operations, demand for air travel to the New York region “is rapidly evaporating” after a spike in cases of COVID-19 illness.

Meanwhile, also during the weekend, United Airlines Holdings Inc announced its daily flights to and from the New York City area would be reduced from 157 to 17. Additionally, JetBlue Airways Corp will reduce its New York City flight schedule by 80%, while Spirit Airlines Inc will cancel all of its flights to that location.

Analyst stock price forecast and recommendation

According to CNN Money, the 16 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding American Airlines Group’s stock price, have a median target of $15.00, with a high estimate of $41.00 and a low estimate of $5.00. The median estimate represents a 57.89% upside compared to the closing price of $9.50 on April 6th.

The same media also reported that at least 7 out of 19 surveyed investment analysts had rated American Airlines Group’s stock as “Hold”, while 3 – as “Buy”. On the other hand, 6 analysts had recommended selling the stock.

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