Much of the talk in the business aviation media this year has been about the depressed state of the market in the United States. However, when you compare the market trends for 2012 to the general trends for the previous three years you get a picture of a market that is on track for growth.
Of course, the United States is a large country with a great deal of regional variation, so different sections of the country can be experiencing vastly different market conditions at any given moment. For example, the South and the West have had a continuously strong year so far with some market growth. In contrast, the Northeast and Midwest have struggled over the last nine months with little to no positive movement in the market.
As one of the largest and most heavily trafficked regions in the country, the South is the main driver of business jet activity in the United States. The two strongest markets within the region, Florida and Texas, represent very different kinds of travel patterns. Florida is very strong in the leisure travel market, and therefore experiences extreme seasonality in its business jet activity. Business jet activity in Texas, meanwhile, is driven primarily by the oil industry and experiences far fewer seasonal fluctuations in traffic over the course of the year.