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27 January 2017, 12:54 | Candice Butler
Boeing outlook brightens after earnings jump
Boeing (BA) beat fourth-quarter earnings and revenue forecasts Wednesday but gave cautious 2017 guidance. Most significantly, the stock is off to a marvellous start this year and now trades at its new record all-time high. Jet fuel prices spiked twice in the past decade, creating a rush for more fuel-efficient planes. Solid backlogs and high delivery rates can be attributed to its mostly bullish trend.
The plane maker reached the crossover point previous year where unit costs for the cutting-edge jetliner finally fell below its sales price. To recoup those losses, Boeing will need to drive its cash profit margin for 787 deliveries much higher in the next few years. Canada's Bombardier and Russian Federation and China are in various stages of delivering similar-sized, single-aisle jetliners.
Highlights for the quarter included the delivery of the 500th 787 Dreamliner, the start of final assembly for the first 787-10 aircraft, and a rush in orders for the 737 MAX. The company now runs a backlog of more than 5,700 aircraft with a sticker value of $416 billion, although airlines routinely get discounts. Boeing took another write-down on a key tanker program that has been plagued by design issues including problems with the refueling boom.
Looking forward, our team is intent on accelerating productivity and program execution to deliver increasing cash and profitability from our large and diverse order backlog of almost $500bn, standing up our new integrated services business, and capturing an even greater share of the the growing global aerospace market to deliver superior value to our customers, shareholders and employees. Muilenburg announced after the meeting that Boeing would lower prices on the Air Force One upgrade and committed to investing in manufacturing in the U.S. "I think the direct engagement and open dialogue is very healthy".
Jeff Windau, an analyst for Edward Jones, said there could be a push and pull under Trump more defense spending but also pressure to cut prices. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Boeing Company (The) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, January 10th. On the other hand, the company's revenue came in at $23.29 billion, exceeding the consensus estimates by $100 million. Gilman Hill Asset Management LLC now owns 2,440 shares of the company's stock worth $427,000 after buying an additional 8 shares during the period.
That surpassed Wall Street expectations. That's just below the average analyst estimate for $9.31, according to Thomson Reuters. Defense, space and security revenues came in at $6.9 billion, roughly ten percent below the prior year's level.
Boeing's full-year earnings dropped year over year in 2016 following the minimized costs, even excluding the effect of several one-time charges the company incurred.
Boeing projected operating cash flow at $10.75 billion in 2017, which would exceed 2016's record mark of $10.5 billion.
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