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How to Be Sure Northwest and Delta Are About to Merge

Here are 10 things to watch for.
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Here are the top 10 ways to tell that



is finally ready to go ahead and merge with


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1. An Atlanta-Shreveport flight suddenly shows up on Northwest's summer schedule.

2. The press release announcing Northwest's April 23 first-quarter earnings call is redistributed, with Atlanta replacing Eagan, Minn., in the dateline.

3. The Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association issues a press release declaring itself "the most competent mechanics' union on the property."

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4. Delta CEO Richard Anderson tells a close friend that while Atlanta is his winter home, he sees value in spending summers in the Twin Cities.

5. The carriers issue a press release proclaiming they were neutral during the 1991 World Series.

6. "Midnight Train to Georgia" is heard playing in the Northwest employee cafeteria.

7. A fleet of


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trucks shows up at Northwest's Memphis hub and begins carting everything and everybody off to Atlanta.

8. The carriers withdraw their application for Transportation Department approval of the six-way antitrust immunity for SkyTeam, saying approval is no longer need because now just one U.S. carrier is involved.

9. Northwest demands immediate construction of a sixth runway at Minneapolis-St. Paul, saying it cannot operate with fewer.

10. And the best way to tell that Northwest is merging with Delta: The directors at the closed-door board meeting send out for Cokes.