Embraer Legacy 500
The light and midsize jets appear to be ending what Citi Research calls their "lost decade," with deliveries expected to be flat in these segments over the rest of this decade. Still, that news could bode well for sales and deliveries of newer entrants such as the midsize Embraer Legacy 500. (Photo: Embraer Executive Jets)

'Lost Decade' for Light and Midsize Bizjets Nears End: Citi Analyst

The light and midsize business jet segments appear to be mostly through the “lost decade.” But for large-cabin jets, which mostly dodged this problem, headwinds could be in the forecast, according to Jon Raviv, the U.S. aerospace and defense senior equity analyst at Citi Research, who spoke recently at the Corporate Jet Investor Miami conference. Citi's “lost decade” thesis, which it introduced in 2013, said that excess aircraft production in the 2000s created a “shadow” preowned inventory that led to an anemic post-Great Recession recovery.

Bizjet Market Mimicking 'Lost Decade,' Analyst Says

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Bizjet Market Mimicking 'Lost Decade,' Analyst Says

Business jet deliveries are anticipated to remain largely flat over the next several years, but still at rates that are double that two decades earlier.

According to Raviv, the light and midsize jet markets have now “found a floor,” since deliveries exceeded long-term trends in the 2000s, which “cannibalized” demand for new aircraft this decade. He is calling for flat deliveries in these segments over the next three years, averaging 444 aircraft annually.

“Large-cabin jets could be on the cusp of a lost decade, but new products such as the [Bombardier] Global 7000 and [Gulfstream] G500 and G600 can aid the escape,” he said. Deliveries in this segment exceeded long-term trends over much of the last 10 years, potentially creating excess inventory.

“Our math suggests large-cabin deliveries could fall as much as 10 percent for the remainder of this decade,” Raviv noted, projecting 178 average annual deliveries in this category over the next three years, below the peak of 302 in 2014, and the 219 delivered last year. He is calling for 197 large-cabin jet shipments this year, followed by 177 and 159 in 2018 and 2019, respectively.