Boeing Stock Soars As 737 Max Production Boost Offsets Wider Q1 Loss

Boeing  (BA) – Get Free Report posted a wider-than-expected first quarter loss Wednesday as the planemaker repeated both its full-year cash flow forecasts and said it plans to boost 737 Max production rates. 

Boeing said its adjusted core loss for the three months ending in March was pegged at $1.27 per share, down from the $2.5 per share loss it reported last year — thanks in part to a $3.5 billion charge linked to delays in production and delivery of its 787 widebody — but 20 cents wider than the Street consensus forecast of $1.07 per share.

Group revenues, Boeing said, rose 28% from last year to $17.92 billion, a tally that narrowly topped analysts’ forecasts of $17.57 billion. 

Adjusted free cash flow was pegged at -$318 million for the quarter, however Boeing reiterated  its full-year forecast of a total between $3 billion and $5 billion. 

“We delivered a solid first quarter and are focused on driving stability for our customers,” said CEO Dave Calhoun. “We are progressing through recent supply chain disruptions but remain confident in the goals we set for this year, as well as for the longer term.

‘Demand is strong across our key markets and we are growing investments to advance our development programs and innovate strategic capabilities for our customers and for our future,” Calhoun added. 

Boeing shares were marked 3.4% higher in pre-market trading immediately following the earnings release to indicate an opening bell price of $209.11 each.

Boeing said it will boost 737 Max production rates to 38 aircraft per month, from the current pace of 31, with 787 production rates rising to 5 per month from 3.

The planemaker also repeated its full-year 737 Max delivery target of between 400 and 450 aircraft, with 787 Dreamliner deliveries forecast between 70 and 80 aircraft.

Boeing said it delivered 64 planes in March, taking its first-quarter tally to 130 aircraft, just ahead of the 127 total reported by Airbus EADSY, topping its European rival for the first time in nearly five years. The Q1 figures included 113 of its 737 Max and 11 units of its wide-body 787 Dreamliner.

The planemaker’s overall aircraft order book totals around 4,555 aircraft and approaches $500 billion in value. 

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