Boeing profits impress as firm awaits Dreamliner probe results

 
City A.M. Reporter
BOEING posted stronger-than-expected profit yesterday as its backlog of orders rose, and said its 2013 forecast assumed no significant financial impact from the grounding of its 787 Dreamliner jet by regulators.

Boeing said net income fell to $978m (£619.5m), or $1.28 per share, in the fourth quarter, from $1.39bn, or $1.84 per share, in the year-ago period, when it posted a special tax gain.

Boeing’s New York-listed shares reacted positively to the results, which come as aviation safety agencies in the US and Japan probe what caused lithium-ion batteries to burn on two 787 passenger jets earlier this month, prompting regulators to ground the planes worldwide.

Boeing said it is continuing to build the Dreamliner but has halted deliveries, and analysts have raised concerns about the cost of the grounding and fixing the battery problem on about 125 jets that Boeing has built so far.

Boeing said it expects to deliver at least 60 Dreamliners in 2013, compared with the 80 or more that analysts expected.