AVIATION: Prospective Merger

Simmering on the financial stove last week was one of the biggest airline mergers in U.S. aviation history: sprawling, 16-year-old Northwest Airlines and fledgling, compact Mid-Continent Airlines. As a single unit the two lines would have 22,000 daily flight miles radiating from Minneapolis-St. Paul (giant American Airlines has over 90,000 miles), a man-sized fleet of big transport planes and more than 5,000 employes. Besides, it would have a strategic "X" route—major lines running north-south and eastwest.

Already approved by the directors of both companies, the merger must await approval by stockholders and...

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