United States General Accounting Office GAO Testimony Before the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, U.S. Senate For Release on Delivery Expected at DOMESTIC AVIATION 2:30 p.m. EST Tuesday October 28, 1997 Barriers Continue to Limit Competition Statement by Gerald L. Dillingham Associate Director, Transportation Issues, Resources, Community, and Economic Development Division GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee: We appreciate the opportunity to testify on the air service problems that some communities have experienced since the deregulation of the airline industry in 1978. Airline deregulation has led to lower airfares and better service for most air travelers, largely because of increased competition spurred by the entry of new airlines into the industry and established airlines into new markets. As we reported in April 1996, however, some airports—particularly those serving small and medium-sized communities in the East and upper Midwest—have not experienced such entry and thus have experienced higher fares and less convenient service since deregulation.1 In an October 1996 report and testimonies earlier this year, we reported that certain industry practices, such as restrictive gate-leasing arrangements at a number of key hub airports in these regions, have contributed to these problems.2 We concluded that the full benefits of deregulation have yet to be realized because of problems with access to certain airports and the cumulative effect of certain marketing strategies employed by established airlines. Our testimony today summarizes findings from our prior work on operating barriers and recent actions taken by the Department of Transportation (DOT) in connection with those findings. We will also discuss how the draft Aviation Competition Enhancement Act of 1997 and other initiatives seek to address those problems. In summary: • A combination of factors continues to limit entry at airports serving small and medium-sized communities in the East and upper Midwest. These factors include the dominance of routes to and from those airports by one or two traditional hub-and-spoke airlines3 and operating barriers, such as 1 Airline Deregulation: Changes in Airfares, Service, and Safety at Small, Medium-Sized, and Large Communities (GAO/RCED-96-79, Apr. 19, 1996). 2 Airline Deregulation: Barriers to Entry Continue to Limit Competition in Several Key Domestic Markets (GAO/RCED-97-4, Oct. 18, 1996); Airline Deregulation: Addressing the Air Service Problems of Some Communities (GAO/T-RCED-97-187, June 25, 1997); and Domestic Aviation: Barriers to Entry Continue to Limit Benefits of Airline Deregulation (GAO/T-RCED-97-120, May 13, 1997). Related GAO products are listed at the end of this statement. 3 These airlines include the nation’s seven largest: American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Northwest Airlines, TWA, United Airlines, and US Airways. Page 1 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 slot controls4 and long-term exclusive-use gate leases at hub airports. In contrast, the more wide-spread entry of new airlines at airports in the West and Southwest since deregulation—and the resulting geographic differences in fare and service trends—has stemmed largely from the greater economic growth in those regions as well as from the absence of dominant market positions of incumbent airlines and barriers to entry. • We have found that little progress has been achieved in lowering the barriers to entry since we first reported on them in 1990.5 Slot controls continue to block entry at key airports in the East and upper Midwest. We recommended that DOT take actions to promote competition in regions that have not experienced lower fares as a result of airline deregulation by creating a pool of available slots by periodically withdrawing some grandfathered slots from the major incumbents and redistributing them in a fashion that increases competition. Moreover, we suggested that, absent action by DOT, the Congress may wish to consider revising the legislative criteria that govern DOT’s granting slots to new entrants. We also suggested that the Congress consider granting DOT the authority to allow exemptions on a case-by-case basis to the perimeter rule6 at National Airport when the proposed service will substantially increase competition. • In response to our recommendations, DOT indicated that it would revise its restrictive interpretation of the legislative criteria governing the granting of new slots. On October 24, 1997, DOT announced its decision on some of the pending requests for slot exemptions and set forth its new policy on slot exemptions. DOT also is evaluating how effectively slots are being used and it is formalizing a policy that will identify anticompetitive behavior as a precursor for formal enforcement action. • The proposed Aviation Competition Enhancement Act of 1997 addresses three barriers to competition: slot controls, the perimeter rule, and predatory behavior by air carriers. • Increasing competition and improving air service at airports serving small and medium-sized communities that have not benefited from fare reductions and/or improved service since deregulation will likely entail a range of federal, regional, local, and private-sector initiatives. Recent national and regional conferences are examples of efforts to pool available 4 To minimize congestion and reduce flight delays, the Federal Aviation Administration has since 1969 set limits on the number of operations (takeoffs or landings) that can occur during certain periods of the day at four congested airports—Chicago O’Hare, Washington National, and New York Kennedy and LaGuardia. The authority to conduct a single operation during those periods is commonly referred to as a “slot.” 5 Airline Deregulation: Barriers to Entry Continue to Limit Competition in Several Key Domestic Markets (GAO/RCED-97-4, Oct. 18, 1996). 6 Rules governing operations at New York’s LaGuardia and Washington’s National airports prohibit flights to and from those airports that exceed a certain distance. Page 2 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 resources to focus on improving the airfares and quality of air service to such communities. Other steps—such as improving access to gates—may also be needed to further ameliorate current competitive problems. Our April 1996 report found that since deregulation, fares have fallen and Airline Barriers to service has improved for most large-community airports. Our report also Entry Persist and found that substantial regional differences exist in fare and service trends, Predominantly Affect particularly among small- and medium-sized community airports. A primary reason for these differences has been the greater degree of Competition in the economic growth that has occurred over the past two decades in larger East and Upper communities and in the West and Southwest. In particular, we noted that most low-fare airlines that began interstate air service after deregulation, Midwest such as Southwest Airlines7 and America West, had decided to enter airports serving communities of all sizes in the West and Southwest because of those communities’ robust economic growth. By contrast, low-fare carriers had generally avoided serving small- and medium-sized-community airports in the East and upper Midwest, in part because of the slower growth, harsher weather, and greater airport congestion in those regions. Our review of the trends in fares between 1979 and 1994 for a sample of 112 small-, medium-sized, and large-community airports8 identified 15 airports at which fares, adjusted for inflation, had declined by over 20 percent and 8 airports at which fares had increased by over 20 percent. Each of the 15 airports where fares declined was located in the West or Southwest, and low-fare airlines accounted for at least 10 percent of the passenger boardings at all but one of those airports in 1994.9 On the other hand, each of the eight airports where fares had increased by over 20 percent since deregulation was located in the Southeast and Appalachia. Our April 1996 report also revealed similar findings concerning the trends in service quantity and quality at the 112 airports. Large communities in 7 Before deregulation, Southwest provided intrastate air service within Texas. 8 Our sample of 112 airports included 49 airports serving small communities, 38 serving medium-sized communities, and 25 serving large communities. In 1994, these airports accounted for about two-thirds of all domestic airline departures and passenger enplanements in the United States. We defined small communities as those with a metropolitan statistical area population of 300,000 or less, medium-sized communities as those with a metropolitan statistical area population of 300,001 to 600,000, and large communities as those with a metropolitan statistical area population of 1.5 million or more. 9 Of the 15 airports, 5 serve small communities, 5 serve medium-sized communities, and 5 serve large communities. Page 3 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 general, and communities of all sizes in the West and Southwest, had experienced a substantial increase in the number of departures and available seats as well as improvements in such service quality indicators as the number of available nonstop destinations and the amount of jet service. However, without the cross-subsidy present under regulation, fares were expected to increase somewhat at airports serving small and medium-sized communities, and carriers were expected to substitute turboprop service for jet. Over time, smaller and medium-sized communities in the East and upper Midwest had generally experienced a decline in the quantity and quality of air service. In particular, these communities had experienced a sharp decrease in the number of available nonstop destinations and in the amount of jet service relative to turboprop service. This decrease occurred largely because established airlines had reduced jet service from these airports since deregulation and deployed turboprops to link the communities to those airlines’ major hubs. We subsequently reported in October 1996 that operating barriers at key hub airports in the East and upper Midwest, combined with certain marketing strategies of the established carriers, fortified established carriers’ dominance of those hub airports and routes linking those hubs with nearby small- and medium-sized-community airports. In the upper Midwest, there is limited competition in part because two airlines control nearly 90 percent of the takeoff and landing slots at O’Hare, and one airline controls the vast majority of gates at the airports in Minneapolis and Detroit under long-term, exclusive-use leases. Similarly, in the Southeast and Appalachia, one airline controls the vast majority of gates under exclusive-use leases at Cincinnati, Charlotte, and Pittsburgh. Finally, in the Northeast, a few established airlines control most of the slots at National, LaGuardia, and Kennedy. As a result, the ability of nonincumbents to enter these key airports and serve nearby small and medium-sized communities is very limited. Particularly for several key markets in the upper Midwest and East, the relative significance of those operating barriers in limiting competition and contributing to higher airfares has grown over time. As a result, our October 1996 report, which specifically addressed the effects of slot and perimeter rules, recommended that DOT take action to lower those barriers, and highlighted areas for potential congressional action. Slots To reduce congestion, FAA has since 1969 limited the number of takeoffs and landings that can occur at O’Hare, National, LaGuardia, and Kennedy. Page 4 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 By allowing new airlines to form and established airlines to enter new markets, deregulation increased the demand for access to these airports. Such increased demand complicated FAA’s efforts to allocate takeoff and landing slots equitably among the airlines. To minimize the government’s role in the allocation of slots, DOT in 1985 began to allow airlines to buy and sell them to one another. Under this “Buy/Sell Rule,” DOT “grandfathered” slots to the holders of record as of December 16, 1985. Emphasizing that it still owned the slots, however, DOT randomly assigned each slot a priority number and reserved the right to withdraw slots from the incumbents at any time. In addition, to mitigate the anticompetitive effects of grandfathering, DOT retained about 5 percent of the slots at O’Hare, National, and LaGuardia and in early 1986 distributed them in a random lottery to airlines having few or no slots at those airports. In August 1990, we reported that a few established carriers had built upon the favorable positions they inherited as a result of grandfathering to such an extent that they could limit access to routes beginning or ending at any of the slot-controlled airports.10 We also reported that while the lottery was successful in placing slots in the hands of some entrants and smaller incumbents, the effect on entry over the long term was disappointing, in part because many of the lottery winners subsequently went out of business or merged with an established carrier. Recognizing the need for new entry at the slot-controlled airports, the Congress in 1994 created an exemption provision to allow additional slots for entry at O’Hare, LaGuardia, and Kennedy when DOT “finds it to be in the public interest and the circumstances to be exceptional.”11 In October 1996, we reported that the level of control over slots by a few established airlines had increased even further (see app. I). We found that the exemption authority, which in effect allows DOT to issue new slots, resulted in little new entry because DOT had interpreted the “exceptional circumstances” criterion very narrowly. DOT had approved applications only to provide service in markets not receiving nonstop service. We found no congressional guidance, however, to support this interpretation. As a result, little new entry occurred at these airports, which is crucial to establishing new service in the heavily traveled eastern and midwestern markets. 10 Airline Competition: Industry Operating and Marketing Practices Limit Market Entry (GAO/RCED-90-147, Aug. 29, 1990). 11 FAA Authorization Act of 1994, P.L. 103-305, section 206. The number of flights at National Airport is further limited by federal law to address local concerns about noise. As a result of these additional limits, the Congress chose not to extend DOT’s exemption authority to include National. Page 5 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 In our 1990 report, we outlined the pros and cons of various policy options to promote airline competition. These options included keeping the Buy/Sell Rule but periodically withdrawing a portion of slots that were grandfathered to the major incumbents and reallocating them by lottery. Because the situation had continued to worsen, we recommended in our October 1996 report that DOT redistribute some of the grandfathered slots to increase competition, taking into account the investments made by those airlines at each of the slot-controlled airports. We also said that if DOT did not choose to do so, the Congress may wish to consider revising the legislative criteria that govern DOT’s exceptional circumstances provision so that DOT could consider competitive benefits as a key criterion in deciding whether or not to grant slots to new entrants. Perimeter Rules At LaGuardia and National airports, perimeter rules prohibit incoming and outgoing flights that exceed 1,500 and 1,250 miles, respectively. The perimeter rules were designed to promote Kennedy and Dulles airports as the long-haul airports for the New York and Washington metropolitan areas. However, the rules limit the ability of airlines based in the West to compete because those airlines are not allowed to serve LaGuardia and National airports from markets where they are strongest. By contrast, because of their proximity to LaGuardia and National, each of the seven largest established carriers is able to serve those airports from its principal hub. While the limit at LaGuardia was established by the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, National’s perimeter rule is federal law.12 Thus, in our October 1996 report, we suggested that the Congress consider granting DOT the authority to allow exemptions to the perimeter rule at National when proposed service will substantially increase competition. We did not recommend that the rule be abolished because removing it could have unintended negative consequences, such as reducing the amount of service to smaller communities in the Northeast and Southeast. This could happen if major slot holders at National were to shift their service from smaller communities to take advantage of more profitable, longer-haul routes. As a result, we concluded that a more prudent course to increasing competition at National would be to examine proposed new services on a case-by-case basis. 12 The Metropolitan Washington Airports Act of 1986 (P.L. 99-591, sec. 6012). Page 6 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Long-Term, Exclusive-Use Our reports have also identified restrictive gate leases as another barrier Gate Leases to establishing new or expanded service at some airports. These leases permit an airline to hold exclusive rights to use most of an airport’s gates over a long period of time, commonly 20 years. Such long-term, exclusive-use gate leases prevent nonincumbents from securing necessary airport facilities on equal terms with incumbent airlines. To gain access to an airport in which most gates are exclusively leased, a nonincumbent must sublet gates from the incumbent airlines—often at nonpreferred times and at a higher cost than the incumbent pays. Since our 1990 report, some airports, such as Los Angeles International, have attempted to regain more control of their facilities by signing less restrictive, shorter-term leases once the exclusive-use leases expired. Nevertheless, our October 1996 report identified several airports in which entry was limited because most of the gates were under long-term, exclusive-use leases with one airline. Although the development, maintenance, and expansion of airport facilities is essentially a local responsibility, most airports are operated under federal restrictions that are tied to the receipt of federal grant money from FAA. In our 1990 report, we suggested that one way to alleviate the barrier created by exclusive-use gate leases would be for FAA to add a grant restriction that ensures that some gates at an airport would be available to nonincumbents. Because many airports have taken steps since then to sign less restrictive gate leases, we concluded in our 1996 report that such a broad grant restriction was not necessary. However, to address the remaining problem areas, we recommended that when disbursing airport improvement grant moneys, FAA give priority to those airports that do not lease the vast majority of their gates to one airline under long-term, exclusive-use terms. In response to our October 1996 report, DOT stated in January of this year DOT’s Recent that it shared our concerns that barriers to entry limit competition in the Announcements airline industry. The agency indicated that it would include competitive Indicate Willingness benefits as a factor when determining whether to grant slots to new entrants under the exceptional circumstances criterion. DOT also to Increase committed to giving careful consideration to our recommendation that it Competition create a pool of available slots and periodically reallocate them, but that it might choose to pursue alternative means to enhancing competition. On October 3, 1997, DOT announced that it would soon publicly issue a number of initiatives aimed at enhancing competition. Two of those initiatives related to identified problems: providing access to high-density airports Page 7 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 through slot exemptions and investigating allegations of anticompetitive behavior. As of mid-October, DOT had 174 requests for slot exemptions, most of which were for slots at O’Hare and LaGuardia airports. On Friday, October 24, 1997, DOT issued its decision on some of the requests for slot exemptions and set forth its new policy on slot exemptions, which has been expanded to take into account the need for increased competition at the slot controlled airports. Because some in government and academia believe that slots at some airports may be underutilized, DOT is also evaluating how effectively slots are being used at these airports. Finally, DOT has expressed concern about potentially over-aggressive attempts by some established carriers to thwart new entry. According to DOT, over the past 16 months, there has been an increasing number of allegations of anticompetitive practices, such as predatory conduct, aimed at new competition, particularly at major network hubs. DOT is formulating a policy that will more clearly delineate what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior in the area of competition between major carriers at their hubs and smaller, low-cost competitors. This policy is to indicate those factors DOT will consider in pursuing remedies through formal enforcement actions. The proposed Aviation Competition Enhancement Act of 1997 has been Aviation Competition drafted to promote domestic competition. The legislation targets three of Enhancement Act of the barriers to competition: slot controls, the perimeter rule, and 1997 Would Address predatory behavior by air carriers. Identified Issues The bill would create a mechanism by which DOT would increase access to the slot-controlled airports. Under the draft legislation, where slots are not available from DOT, the Department would be required to periodically withdraw a small portion of the slots that were grandfathered to incumbent airlines and reallocate them among new entrant and limited incumbent air carriers.13 Slots would not be withdrawn if they were already being used to serve certain small or medium-sized airports. This provision of the proposed bill is consistent with the spirit of our recommendation on slots and provides a good starting point for the debate about how such a process should be used and its potential impact. Our recommendation recognized the sensitivities with withdrawing and 13 The proposed bill specifies that generally not more than 10 percent of incumbents’ grandfathered slots could be withdrawn initially and not more than 5 percent every 2 years thereafter. It generally defines a limited incumbent carrier as one holding no more than 12 slots at an airport. Page 8 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 reallocating slots from one airline to another by stating that such a process should take into account the investments made by the established airlines. The proposed bill does not specify details about how DOT should implement this process. Because of the sensitivities in making any reallocations, DOT would need to carefully consider balancing the goals of increasing competition with fair treatment of affected parties. The bill also addresses the perimeter rule by requiring the Secretary of Transportation to grant exemptions to the existing 1,250 mile limit at Washington National Airport under certain circumstances. There are legitimate concerns about whether or not exemptions to the rule would negatively affect the noise, congestion, and safety at Washington National, as well as air service to and from different communities within the perimeter. The bill addresses these concerns by specifying that only stage 3 aircraft (aircraft that meet FAA’s most stringent noise standards) can be used and that exemptions would not be allowed to affect the number of hourly commercial operations at National Airport. The bill further specifies that the Secretary certify that whenever exemptions to the rule are granted, noise, congestion, and safety will not deteriorate relative to their 1997 levels. The Secretary must similarly certify that air service to communities within the existing perimeter will not worsen. Finally, the bill also contains a provision intended to limit the time that DOT has to respond to complaints of predatory behavior. As we noted previously, because of its concerns in this area, DOT plans to announce a policy that will more clearly delineate the factors it will consider in pursuing remedies through formal enforcement actions. Because a variety of factors has contributed to higher fares and poorer Range of Initiatives service that some small and medium-sized communities in the East and Will Likely Be Needed upper Midwest have experienced since deregulation, a coordinated effort to Address Air Service involving federal, regional, local, and private-sector initiatives may be needed. In addition to DOT’s planned actions and the proposed legislation, Problems several public and private initiatives that are currently under way, as well as other potential options, are discussed below. If successful, these initiatives would complement, and potentially encourage, the increasing use of small jets by the commuter affiliates of established airlines—a trend that has the potential for increasing competition and improving the quality of service for some communities. Page 9 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Regional, State, and Local Recognizing that federal actions alone would not remedy their regions’ air Initiatives service problems, several airport directors and community chamber of commerce officials in the Southeast and Appalachian regions recently initiated a coordinated effort to improve air service in their regions. As a result of this effort, several members of Congress from the Southeast and Appalachian regions in turn organized a bipartisan caucus named “Special Places of Kindred Economic Situation” (SPOKES). Among other things, SPOKES is designed to ensure sustained consumer education and coordinate federal, state, local, and private efforts to address the air service problems of communities adversely affected since deregulation. Two SPOKES-led initiatives under way include establishing and developing a Website on the Internet and convening periodic “national air service roundtables” to bring together federal, state, and local officials and airline, airport, and business representatives to explore potential solutions to air service problems. On February 7, 1997, the first roundtable was held in Chattanooga. A key conclusion of the February 1997 roundtable was that greater regional, state, and local efforts were needed to promote economic growth and attract established and new airlines alike to serve small and medium-sized markets in the East and upper Midwest. Suggested initiatives included (1) creating regional trade associations composed of state and local officials, airport directors, and business executives; (2) offering local financial incentives to nonincumbents, such as guaranteeing a specified amount of revenue or providing promotional support; and (3) communities’ aggressive marketing efforts to airlines to spur economic growth. Private-Sector Initiatives To grow and prosper, businesses need convenient, affordable air service. As a result, businesses located in the affected communities have increasingly attempted to address their communities’ air service problems. Perhaps the most visible of these efforts has been the formation of the Business Travel Contractors Corporation (BTCC) by 45 corporations, including Chrysler Motors, Procter & Gamble, and Black & Decker. These corporations formed BTCC because they were concerned about the high fares they were paying in markets dominated by one established airline. BTCC held national conferences in Washington, D.C., in April and October 1997 to examine this problem and explore potential market-based initiatives. At BTCC’s October conference, attendees endorsed the concepts of (1) holding periodic slot lotteries to provide new entrant carriers with access to slot controlled airports, (2) allowing new entrants and other small carriers to serve points beyond Washington National’s perimeter Page 10 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 rule, and (3) requiring DOT to issue a policy addressing anticompetitive practices, and specifying the time frames within which all complaints will be acted upon. Regional Jets In addition to public and private-sector initiatives, the increasing use of 50- to 70-seat regional jets is improving the quality of air service for a growing number of communities. Responding to consumers’ preference to fly jets rather than turboprops for greater comfort, convenience, and a perceived higher level of safety, commuter affiliates of established airlines are increasingly using regional jets to (1) replace turboprops on routes between established airlines’ hubs and small and medium-sized communities and (2) initiate nonstop service on routes that are either uneconomical or too great a distance for commuter carriers to serve with slower, higher-cost, and shorter-range turboprops. Because regional jets can generally fly several hundred miles farther than turboprops, commuter carriers will be able to link more cities to established airlines’ hubs. To the extent that this occurs, it could increase competition in many small and medium-sized communities by providing consumers with more service options. Mr. Chairman, this concludes our prepared statement. We would be glad to respond to any questions that you or any member of the Subcommittee may have. Page 11 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Appendix I Percentage of Domestic Air Carrier Slots Held by Selected Groups Airport Holding entity 1986 1991 1996 O’Hare American and United 66 83 87 Other established airlines 28 13 9 Financial institutions 0 3 2 Post-deregulation airlines 6 1 1 Kennedy Shawmut Bank, American, and Delta 43 60 75 Other established airlines 49 18 13 Other financial institutions 0 19 6 Post-deregulation airlines 9 3 7 LaGuardia American, Delta, and US Airways 27 43 64 Other established airlines 58 39 14 Financial institutions 0 7 20 Post-deregulation airlines 15 12 2 National American, Delta, and US Airways 25 43 59 Other established airlines 58 42 20 Financial institutions 0 7 19 Post-deregulation airlines 17 8 3 Notes: Numbers may not add to 100 percent due to rounding. Some airlines that held slots have gone bankrupt, and as a result, financial institutions have acquired slots. Source: GAO’s analysis of data from FAA. Page 12 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Appendix I Percentage of Domestic Air Carrier Slots Held by Selected Groups Page 13 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Appendix I Percentage of Domestic Air Carrier Slots Held by Selected Groups Page 14 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Related GAO Products Airline Deregulation: Addressing the Air Service Problems of Some Communities (GAO/T-RCED-97-187, June 25, 1997). Domestic Aviation: Barriers to Entry Continue to Limit Benefits of Airline Deregulation (GAO/T-RCED-97-120, May 13, 1997). Airline Deregulation: Barriers to Entry Continue to Limit Competition in Several Key Domestic Markets (GAO/RCED-97-4, Oct. 18, 1996). Changes in Airfares, Service, and Safety Since Airline Deregulation (GAO/T-RCED-96-126, Apr. 25, 1996). Airline Deregulation: Changes in Airfares, Service, and Safety at Small, Medium-Sized, and Large Communities (GAO/RCED-96-79, Apr. 19, 1996). Airline Competition: Essential Air Service Slots at O’Hare International Airport (GAO/RCED-94-118FS, Mar. 4, 1994). Airline Competition: Higher Fares and Less Competition Continue at Concentrated Airports (GAO/RCED-93-171, July 15, 1993). Airline Competition: Options for Addressing Financial and Competition Problems, Testimony Before the National Commission to Ensure a Strong Competitive Airline Industry (GAO/T-RCED-93-52, June 1, 1993). Computer Reservation Systems: Action Needed to Better Monitor the CRS Industry and Eliminate CRS Biases (GAO/RCED-92-130, Mar. 20, 1992). Airline Competition: Effects of Airline Market Concentration and Barriers to Entry on Airfares (GAO/RCED-91-101, Apr. 26, 1991). Airline Competition: Weak Financial Structure Threatens Competition (GAO/RCED-91-110, Apr. 15, 1991). Airline Competition: Fares and Concentration at Small-City Airports (GAO/RCED-91-51, Jan. 18, 1991). Airline Deregulation: Trends in Airfares at Airports in Small and Medium-Sized Communities (GAO/RCED-91-13, Nov. 8, 1990). Airline Competition: Industry Operating and Marketing Practices Limit Market Entry (GAO/RCED-90-147, Aug. 29, 1990). Page 15 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Related GAO Products Airline Competition: Higher Fares and Reduced Competition at Concentrated Airports (GAO/RCED-90-102, July 11, 1990). Airline Deregulation: Barriers to Competition in the Airline Industry (GAO/T-RCED-89-65, Sept. 20, 1989). Airline Competition: DOT’s Implementation of Airline Regulatory Authority (GAO/RCED-89-93, June 28, 1989). Airline Service: Changes at Major Montana Airports Since Deregulation (GAO/RCED-89-141FS, May 24, 1989). Airline Competition: Fare and Service Changes at St. Louis Since the TWA-Ozark Merger (GAO/RCED-88-217BR, Sept. 21, 1988). Competition in the Airline Computerized Reservation Systems (GAO/T-RCED-88-62, Sept. 14, 1988). Airline Competition: Impact of Computerized Reservation Systems (GAO/RCED-86-74, May 9, 1986). Airline Takeoff and Landing Slots: Department of Transportation’s Slot Allocation Rule (GAO/RCED-86-92, Jan. 31, 1986). Deregulation: Increased Competition Is Making Airlines More Efficient and Responsive to Consumers (GAO/RCED-86-26, Nov. 6, 1985). (348057) Page 16 GAO/T-RCED-98-32 Ordering Information The first copy of each GAO report and testimony is free. Additional copies are $2 each. Orders should be sent to the following address, accompanied by a check or money order made out to the Superintendent of Documents, when necessary. VISA and MasterCard credit cards are accepted, also. Orders for 100 or more copies to be mailed to a single address are discounted 25 percent. Orders by mail: U.S. General Accounting Office P.O. Box 37050 Washington, DC 20013 or visit: Room 1100 700 4th St. NW (corner of 4th and G Sts. NW) U.S. General Accounting Office Washington, DC Orders may also be placed by calling (202) 512-6000 or by using fax number (202) 512-6061, or TDD (202) 512-2537. 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Domestic Aviation: Barriers Continue to Limit Competition
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1997-10-28.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)