Business aviation activity in the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean ended 2018 on a down note, with December's activity falling 0.5 percent year-over-year, according to the latest TraqPak data from Argus International. This fell short of its forecast for a 0.8 percent increase last month and broke a five-year streak of gains for the month of December. Argus is predicting a 0.6 percent rise in activity this month.
Results by operational category were mixed, with fractional flying once again posting the largest year-over-year gain, climbing 3.5 percent, followed by Part 91 with a 1.4 percent rise. However, Part 135/charter activity declined for the seventh consecutive month, falling 4.1 percent from a year earlier.
Meanwhile, flight activity was mostly negative by aircraft category, with only midsize jets posting a year-over-year increase, up 2.8 percent. Turboprops recorded the largest loss at -2.8 percent, while light and large-cabin jet flying fell 1.6 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively, versus December 2017.
The only double-digit gain in individual categories was that for fractional midsize jets, which rose 10 percent year-over-year. Conversely, fractional large-cabin jet flying fell 20.3 percent from a year earlier, logging the only double-digit loss.
By region, the U.S. Southeast continued to dominate, with 55,838 departures last month, followed by the Western-Pacific (32,020) and Southwest (30,993).