The Impact of Mergers on Quality Provision: Evidence from the Airline Industry

We examine how mergers affect quality provision by analyzing five U.S. airline mergers, focusing on on-time performance (OTP). We find that airline mergers have minimal negative impacts on OTP, and likely result in long-run improvements due to efficiencies. Importantly, we show that this finding is not driven by post-merger changes in price that could affect OTP. Consequently, at least in the case of airlines, policymakers should not, as a rule, fear the negative quality effects of mergers.