Just four months after predicting a $6-billion loss for the world's airlines in 2010, the International Air Transport Association has changed its mind. IATA now says the loss will be more like $2.6 billion. Why? IATA says, "The improvement is largely driven by a much stronger recovery in demand seen by year-end gains that continued into the first months of 2010. Relatively flat capacity translated into some yield improvement and stronger revenues. "
Here's the translation from Aviation Speak: the world economy is getting better faster than expected. And since airlines have cut the number of seats in the air, they've lowered their operating costs. And since there are fewer seats in the air, the airlines can charge higher fares.