No one wanted to be in Boeing’s (BA) shoes, at least until today perhaps. The big US airplane company has hit three delays for its 787 Dreamliner and there are rumors that union work stoppages could make that worse. The set-back threatens Boeing’s earnings forecasts and could cause 787 customers to ask for late delivery penalties.
Now the spotlight is off Boeing and pointed toward it primary competitor, Airbus. The European firm has announced more delays to it A380 super-jumbo plane which competes with a new version of Boeing’s 747.
According to Reuters "Airbus said it was unable to boost production as quickly as it hoped as it tries to recover from two years of production delays caused by problems in installing the wiring on the world’s largest passenger plane."
The injured parties from all of this news are airlines who hoped to use the new jets for more fuel-efficient and modern fleets. The carriers are facing having to use old planes which burn more gas at a time when oil prices continue to move up. Many of these carriers are already inching into positions where they cannot meet debt service.
For Boeing, Airbus, and the carriers, it is one of the few games in town where everyone loses.
Douglas A. McIntyre