Again in April, Warren Buffett (Trades, Portfolio) made an announcement that got here as a shock to many buyers on the time. The Oracle of Omaha declared that he’d dumped all of his airline stocks because of the dangers and uncertainty dealing with the business.This was an enormous shock as a result of just a few weeks earlier than, Buffett was nonetheless shopping for airline stocks and touting the business’s strengths.Since he accomplished these offers, the market has been awash with hypothesis and criticism as to why Buffett made these strikes. Just lately, although, developments within the sector lead me to consider that this was the suitable transfer.Buffett on airlinesBuffett made his first massive airline funding in 1989 in USAir, shopping for $358 million worth of most popular stock with a 9.25% dividend and a compulsory redemption in 10 years. Whereas the commerce did earn money for Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A) (NYSE:BRK.B) and its buyers, it was finally a foul deal.The corporate’s main difficulty was value. Its prices have been greater than the remainder of the business, which meant it struggled to compete with extra environment friendly carriers. As Buffett advised Berkshire’s shareholders in 1994:”USAir has a price construction which is non-viable in at this time’s airline enterprise…I believe the price construction may very well be introduced into line, however whether or not it will likely be introduced into line or not is one other query.” This was an issue that each one airways, not simply USAir needed to take care of. As Buffett later remarked in 2008, the business’s demand for capital has been insatiable since just about the primary flight:”The airline business’s demand for capital ever since that first flight has been insatiable. Buyers have poured cash right into a bottomless pit, attracted by development when they need to have been repelled by it.” Nonetheless, in 2016 and 2017, Buffett’s view on airways shifted. He believed that the sector had modified for the higher. Corporations had develop into extra conscious of their prices and prioritized profit-making over development. This transformation in perspective satisfied him that the sector was worth investing in once more.We’ll by no means actually know if Buffett was satisfied that the business had modified for good, or if he’d simply run out of different concepts within the booming stock market, however because it seems, Buffett was improper. The business has as soon as once more reverted to its “bottomless pit” standing.Final weekend, American Airways (NASDAQ:AAL) introduced that it’s going to increase $3.5 billion in new financing on high of the corporate’s current debt load of $34 billion and a $4.eight billion loan from the U.S. authorities. As a part of the financing deal, the corporate will promote stock worth $750 million, about 12% of the provider’s whole variety of excellent shares.This deal will dilute shareholders considerably, and there is not any assure it’s going to be the corporate’s final fundraising. American Airways is the primary to return again to the marketplace for new cash after the current authorities bailout, and it is unlikely to be the final.For my part, this proves Buffett’s resolution to promote was right. On the top of the disaster, it was unattainable to inform which corporations would survive and which would not. With a lot uncertainty, Buffett determined to promote all of his airline holdings fairly than gamble on the longer term. Now we’re beginning to see the influence of the disaster on these corporations’ backside strains. There may very well be future dilution and ache forward for shareholders because the disaster rumbles on.After his gross sales, Buffett introduced that the “world has modified” for airways. This assertion has confirmed to be right. Demand would possibly ultimately return to earlier ranges, however the brand new debt these corporations have taken on will show to be a drag on earnings for a few years, with a excessive alternative value for shareholders within the meantime.Disclosure: The creator owns shares in Berkshire Hathaway.Learn extra right here:Not a Premium Member of GuruFocus? Join a free 7-day trial right here.This text first appeared on GuruFocus.