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Abstract

An investigation is conducted on the effect of financial distress on customer service levels in the U.S. airline industry. Using data from the first quarter of 1998 to the third quarter of 2006, we employ a seemingly unrelated regressions (SUR) model to analyze the impact of financial distress on three measures of customer service. We find that higher financial distress is associated with better on-time performance of airlines and fewer lost bags. The relationship of airline financial distress to the number of bumped customers, however, is insignificant.

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