UBS Bizjet Survey Shows Hints of Optimism

 - July 14, 2009, 12:02 PM

UBS Investment Research’s latest Business Jet Market Index, released this morning, shows the fifth consecutive move higher, “indicative of a continuing slowing in the rate of market deterioration.” The index, which measures the change in a group of business aviation professionals’ views from previous UBS index surveys, came in at 37, slightly higher than the 35 reported in May and greatly above the record-low of 13 in November. A score lower than 50 indicates weaker market conditions, while higher than 50 shows strengthening conditions. “While our index, which is weighed down heavily by weak pricing and high inventories, doesn’t yet indicate stabilization, our straight up measure of absolute business conditions held steady.” UBS aviation/aerospace analyst David Strauss believes this latest survey continues to reflect increasing customer interest on the back of 30- to 40-percent price declines for pre-owned business jets, along with somewhat improved financing availability. “Though interest has improved,” Strauss said, “actual transactions are still scarce as buyers’ and sellers’ expectations remain misaligned.” While a bottom is near, UBS said the potential remains for further production cuts at aircraft manufacturers, especially if there is an extended downturn.