AEA Members Optimistic Despite Economic Concerns in 2011 Rate and Labor Survey

LEE'S SUMMIT, MO - The Aircraft Electronics Association released the results from its 2011 Rate & Labor Survey this week to participating AEA member companies. The complete AEA Rate & Labor Survey is now available for purchase for non-members.

In comparing this year's annual survey results with the 2010 Rate & Labor Survey, the AEA discovered some improvements in business outlook despite business activity that appears to be leveling off in 2011.

Of those repair stations responding to this year's survey, 49 percent said they expect their business to increase this year, and 46 percent expect their business to remain the same. Only 5 percent expect a decrease in business, compared to the 15 percent who expected a decrease in 2009, and 8 percent in 2010. While the majority of repair stations still believe economic conditions are negatively impacting their business, the numbers dropped from 79 percent in 2010 to 70 percent in 2011.

According to survey respondents, the drivers for business decline include a weakening economy, increased regulation and the anti-aviation sentiment coming from the current White House administration. Any perceived increase in business is associated with the release of innovative new products, more strategic marketing efforts by member repair stations and more activity in the used aircraft market.

"The comments received from this year's Rate & Labor Survey are a sign that our members are having to clear even more hurdles to reach their business expectations," said AEA President Paula Derks. "The growth outlook we had in 2010 has tempered some in 2011, but members remain positive that new products and new markets - along with aircraft transaction activity - will drive growth into 2012."

This annual survey, which is distributed to AEA members at no charge as one of their membership benefits, examines and compares shop and labor rates by national and international regions. It also shows employee benefit/compensation package information, a profile of technician experience, regional employment demand, and a business outlook perspective.

Non-AEA members can purchase the 2011 Rate & Labor Survey results, available digitally, for $129. For more information, contact Mike Adamson, vice president of member programs and education for the AEA, at 816-347-8400 or


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Founded in 1957, the Aircraft Electronics Association represents nearly 1,300 member companies in more than 40 countries, including approved maintenance organizations specializing in maintenance, repair and installation of aircraft electronics systems in general aviation aircraft. The AEA membership also includes manufacturers of aircraft electronics equipment, instrument repair facilities, instrument manufacturers, airframe manufacturers, test equipment manufacturers, major distributors, engineers and educational institutions.