Boeing Co.’s first-quarter profit beat analysts’ estimates as the world’s biggest aerospace company delivered more commercial jets while pushing production to record levels.
Earnings rose 58 percent to $923 million, or $1.22 a share, excluding some items, Boeing said today in a statement. That topped the average estimate of 93 cents in a Bloomberg survey of 26 analysts. Boeing raised its forecast for 2012 profit to a range of $4.15 to $4.35 a share, from $4.05 to $4.25 projected in January.
Boeing shipped 137 jetliners last quarter, compared with 131 deliveries by rival Airbus SAS, as the Chicago-based planemaker moves to recapture the title of biggest commercial jet producer it lost in 2003. Boeing is boosting output by more than 60 percent in the four years through 2014 to pare a record order backlog from customers seeking more fuel-efficient jets.
“Commercial aircraft demand will support planned production ramps at Boeing and Airbus into 2015,” Douglas Harned, a New York-based analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., wrote in an April 23 note. “Although we have heard concerns about aircraft financing and higher oil prices, we do not see either as a fundamental barrier during this period.”
Sales rose 30 percent to $19.4 billion, Boeing said.
The shares jumped 2.1 percent to $74.75 at 7:38 a.m. before regular trading in New York. Boeing had dropped 0.2 percent this year through yesterday.
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