Boeing 737 MAX deliveries fall in February
WASHINGTON, March 14 (Reuters) - Boeing Co (BA.N) said on Tuesday it delivered 28 aircraft in February, down from 38 deliveries the previous month amid supply-chain problems and a delivery pause of several weeks involving the 787 Dreamliner.
The U.S.-based aerospace giant has delivered 66 aircraft since the beginning of the year, equivalent to the number delivered by European rival Airbus (AIR.PA).
Boeing delivered 24 of its bestselling 737 MAX aircraft last month compared to 35 in January.
While the drop-off in deliveries was somewhat expected, with Boeing Chief Financial Officer Brian West last month estimating MAX deliveries in the "low 20s" for February, the situation was further complicated when Boeing discovered a data analysis error that led the Federal Aviation Administration to pause 787 Dreamliner deliveries on Feb. 23.
The company delivered a single 787 to United Airlines (UAL.O) last month, down from three Dreamliners in January.
The FAA has approved 787 deliveries to restart as early as this week.
Deliveries are an important metric for Wall Street, as airlines hand over the bulk of their payment to Boeing when they pick up their planes.
Boeing also delivered one 737-based P-8A Poseidon submarine hunting aircraft for New Zealand, one 777 freighter for Air China Cargo, and its final 747 jumbo jet, a freighter version that was delivered to Atlas Air (AAWW.O) .
Deliveries of the 767 remain slowed due to a quality issue involving the aircraft's center fuel tank, which Boeing must rework before handing over aircraft to customers.
Orders for Boeing also decreased compared to the previous month. It booked five gross orders in February for 737 MAXs to be purchased by an unidentified customer. However, that number was offset by three canceled MAX orders, resulting in only two net orders - a sharp drop from January's 16 net orders.
West is expected to update analysts on Boeing's delivery progress during a March 22 appearance at the Bank of America Global Industrial conference.
Boeing expects to deliver upwards of 400 MAX aircraft and at least 70 Dreamliners in 2023. The company hopes to ramp up production from about 31 MAX jets a month to 38 by the end of the year, but West has said that rate hinges on whether Boeing's supply chain can stabilize.
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