Business: The High Cost of Competition

Anyone who has sat in an airport watching mostly empty planes from competing lines take off for the same place at almost the same time may have wondered whether all those trips were necessary. Alone among nations, the U.S. allows a flock of its airlines to compete on routes that can barely pay off for one. Probably the worst case of overcompetition is the Los Angeles-Honolulu route, covered by eight lines.

Last week Secor Browne, chairman of the Civil Aeronautics Board, sugested that the airlines take the lead in reducing excess competition. In a major policy speech delivered at a meeting of...

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