I'd imagine everything in CVG now more or less pulls its weight P&L wise. If it didn't it would've been cut after the merger. As for the market itself, while it might not have the growth prospects of a BOS or RDU, DL already has a commanding share of the market and FF base, something they're still trying to build in their focus cities. No reason to threaten that if it's making you money.
That isn't necessarily true, CVG-XNA/MKE/BNA were running for many years unprofitably, and were just now cut. After the merger they still were able to command a heavy fare premium from CVG flyers, but as more competition has entered the market ticket prices have plummeted for DL, hence routes like CVG-XNA/MKE/BNA unable to be kept around.
I was interested in the market share aspect of what you said, so looking at Fares from Q2 2018/2015: https://www.transtats.bts.gov/DL_SelectFields.asp
I created a chart to show the changes in the market since 2015: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/ ... sp=sharing
From CVG DL has gotten severely hurt by the influx in ULCC./LCC service
Here are some of the route pairs were average fares dropped the most of DL
*Denotes dropped service
Furthermore, there are very few routes with competition where DL outperforms AA/UA.
Market share and average fares are two separate things, though. And there isn't an exact one-for-one relationship between the two, they're only one factor that affect the other. And DL "outperforming" AA/UA or not is hardly relevant to this topic if you're looking at route data going both ways. For something like CVG-EWR, where the EWR end is a larger market where UA gets an outsized passenger share, it makes sense that UA will get a higher fare. In terms of exit-CVG/CVG-based pax my point still stands.
And of course when I talked about market share in the first place, it was relative to places that DL is growing for strategic regions like BOS and RDU. I'd wager that fares adjusted for distance are higher in CVG than their equivalents in those cities. I'm sure tphuang will come by soon to offer some harder data on that point.
They are very obviously two different things. However, you said DL has a "commanding share of the market", and the fact that average fares have dropped drastically is a major aspect to look at, and hardly something you should look over.
And since you would like to discuss Market Share, here are some data points to look at:https://data.transportation.gov/Aviatio ... -b2ir/data
2015-2018 both ways includedCVG-NYC
Market Share 2015: 53.15%/$228
Market Share 2018: 46.00%/$412
Loss of Market Share: 7.15%CVG-WAS
Market Share 2015: 54.21%/$213
Market Share 2018: 35.82%/$167
Loss of Market Share: 18.4%CVG-PHL
Market Share 2015: 28.43%/$311
Market Share 2018: 28.47%/$197
Gain of Market Share: .04%
Furthermore, I looked through the adjusted fares by distance, and RDU and CVG are about equal at this point. With RDU having an itinerary yield of 0.3135 and CVG of 0.3291. We can go through market by market, analyzing DL's position. However, it is evident that DL's control of the CVG market is not nearly what it used to be.