DCA-ROCguy: How do you know so much detail about US Airway's financial status? Where do you get these exact numbers for how much cash US has on hand and has gone through in the month of March? Usually share holders would have this financial info, but from your tone I don't think you'd be caught dead with US Airways stock. I'm dying to know where I can find these financial reports? I also thought you might find it interesting to know that PIT on average brings in more cash than both CLT and PHL. This stat will make PIT more attractive to other carriers should US go under.
All of these numbers are reported in a) US Airways press releases, and b) in articles from various aviation-related publications, and US Airways-city local newspapers, which are linked to this site's news page.
PIT might well bring in the most cash, but it doesn't any of the other five Cartel-network carriers' route systems. Remember, when US Airways goes under, DOJ will only allow it to be sold piecemeal--they sent a very clear message by dissing UA-US. Besides, the other Cartel carriers are in such bad financial shape post 9-11 that none of them could likely afford, or would want, US whole.
Also, there is an excess of Cartel-network mainline seat capacity in the USA right now. The traffic no longer exists to support the current capacity of 9.5-13-cent CASM seats. That capacity must drop, or the CASMs of the carriers must drop, in order for those carriers to be viable in the long term. In the short term, capacity must drop, until these carriers resolve their fundamental cost problems (most of which are related to labor cost structure and fleet complexity).
US Airways' departure from this life will offer a convenient way for the Cartel to accomplish part of this short-term task on the East Coast. PHL would fit NW's route structure nicely, and CLT would fit UA',s AA's, or CO's nicely. Both of these airports already support more higher-yield transatlantic capacity than does PIT. They could easily absorb PIT's traffic.
PIT, no matter how well it does for US (and given US' condition, it would be hard to imagine that anything other than the shuttles and regional routes are really profitable at their cost structure), is a goner in the post-US world. It's sad, because of the job disruption and relocations it will involve, and because of PIT's proud aviation history. But the economics of the broader industry suggest that's the way it will go.
Also, after US' demise, the low-fare carriers will expand in the Northeast to fill demand. Their broad success in this region indicates that demand for 7-7.5 cent CASM seat capacity is doing just fine. Expect WN to enter ROC, SYR, RIC, and probably GSO, DAY, CAE, quickly upon US's demise. Just like they bought Morris Air, and just like they jumped into CA with both feet a decade ago.
Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)