Boeing Posts First Quarterly Profit Since 2019

Boeing has posted a profit of $755 million for the second quarter of 2021. The results align the planemaker with much of the US aviation industry as major airlines also posted a profit for the quarter. This quarter’s profit also means that the planemaker has posted a profit for the first half of the year despite a Q1 loss.

Boeing, Profit, 737 MAX
Boeing has posted its first profit since Q3 2019. Photo: Vincenzo Pace – Simple FlyingBoeing, Profit, 737 MAX

It’s been a tough few years for Boeing. With the MAX grounded in Q2 2019, the planemaker saw profits change to losses as it could not deliver its narrowbody. It was already a long road to recertification for the type when another problem, the global pandemic, hit the manufacturer.

Back in positive numbers

In Q1 of 2019, Boeing posted a profit of $1.986 billion. Little did it know at the time that this would be the company’s last profit above $1 billion for two years. The only other profit posted since then was $895 in Q3 2019. The manufacturer is not back to profit for the first time in seven quarters.

Boeing, Profit, 737 MAX
Boeing has become used to losses since the start of 2019. (Numbers in Millions). Data: Boeing

According to Boeing, this quarter, it saw a core operating profit of $755 million. The company ended the quarter with cash and marketable securities equalling $21.3 billion. At the same time, it has a total consolidated debt of $63.6 billion.

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The commercial arm

As far as commercial operations are concerned, things went far better for Boeing in Q2 2021 compared to Q2 2020. The planemaker delivered 79 aircraft to several airlines. The Commercial Airplanes arm clocked a revenue of $6 billion, primarily driven by aircraft deliveries.

Boeing, Profit, 737 MAX
Resumed MAX deliveries have helped push the numbers up. Photo: Vincenzo Pace – Simple Flying

Last year the manufacturer managed just 20 aircraft deliveries during the period, meaning that deliveries increased almost 300% year on year. A large part of this was that the 737 MAX is now recertified. Since the FAA ungrounded the aircraft, Boeing has delivered more than 130 new planes of the type.

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Sadly, it is not all smiles at Boeing. The 787 Dreamliner program continues to be plagued with nightmares. The planemaker cannot deliver the type, meaning that it has been forced to cut the type’s production rate in the interim.

As far as orders for the period went, the commercial airplanes arm didn’t get so many new orders, but those it did get were sizeable. United Airlines ordered 200 MAX aircraft, while Southwest Airlines ordered 34. 31 cargo aircraft orders were also placed. As such, the company now has a backlog of over 4,100 aircraft worth some $285 billion.

Boeing, Profit, 737 MAX
The 787 Dreamliner program is still facing issues. Photo: Vincenzo Pace – Simple Flying

Commenting, Boeing CEO, David Calhoun, said,

“We continued to make important progress in the second quarter as we focus on driving stability across our operations and transforming our business for the future. While our commercial market environment is improving, we’re closely monitoring COVID-19 case rates, vaccine distribution and global trade as key indicators for our industry’s stability.”

What do you make of Boeing’s second-quarter results? Let us know what you think and why in the comments below!