Boeing’s profit surges; first S.C.-made 787 under way

A Boeing Co. 747-8F is shown in Seattle. Boeing Co. said Wednesday, July 27, 2011, its second-quarter profit rose almost 20 percent as it delivered more commercial airplanes. The company raised its outlook for the full year.

Boeing’s commercial airplane profits surged in the second quarter, pushing net income up almost 20 percent. It raised its guidance for the year, and it also said it is beginning the final assembly work on its first 787 jet at its North Charleston campus.

Boeing also said on Wednesday that it will not deliver as many of its new 787s and 747-8s this year as previously hoped.

Boeing earned $941 million, or $1.25 per share. Revenue rose 6.2 percent to $16.54 billion. That topped the expectations of analysts surveyed by FactSet, who predicted net income of 98 cents per share on revenue of $16.47 billion.

Boeing raised its 2011 outlook to $3.90 to $4.10 per share, up by 10 cents on the high and low ends. Analysts had been expecting $4.12 per share.

Boeing delivered 118 planes during the quarter, up from 114 a year ago. Revenue in its commercial airplanes unit rose 19 percent to $8.84 billion. Operating profits from commercial planes jumped 35 percent to $920 million. In addition to more deliveries, Boeing benefited from a shift toward higher-priced planes. Boeing makes about one 737 every day with a list price of around $80 million. It doesn’t make as many of its big 777s, but they sell for three times as much.

Boeing now expects to deliver 485 to 495 planes this year, five fewer than previously predicted. That reflects fewer expected deliveries of the 787 and 747-8, two new planes that have been plagued by delays.

Boeing now expects to deliver a combined 25 to 30 of the planes, down from 25 to 40. It says the first deliveries for both will occur “later in the third quarter,” which ends in September. Boeing had firm orders for 827 of the 787s at the end of the quarter.

Boeing recently completed its 787 plant at Charleston International Airport, where up to three planes a month are to roll off the assembly line by early 2013.

The first jet being built now will be delivered in early 2012 to an undisclosed customer.

See Thursday’s editions of The Post and Courier for more details.