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Higher commercial jet deliveries boost Boeing's profit

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

By Sweta Singh

(Reuters) - Boeing Co reported a 52 percent increase in quarterly profit, helped by a rise in commercial aircraft deliveries, and raised its full-year earnings forecast.

Still, that was not enough for the company to beat Wall Street's average revenue estimate.

Boeing's shares, which have gained 21 percent in the past year, were down 1 percent at $128.40 premarket on Wednesday.

The company said commercial aircraft deliveries rose 7 percent to 181, including 30 Dreamliner jets, in the second quarter ended June 30.

The company's ability to churn out Dreamliner jets is crucial to its financial performance this year as it is relying on commercial jets to offset a weak defense business.

While Boeing still loses money on each 787 it builds, it gets closer to breaking even as production increases.

The planemaker delivered its first stretched Dreamliner 787-9 in the quarter.

Boeing and its European rival Airbus Group NV have been ramping up production to cater to increasing demand from airlines. Boeing is going full throttle and said in January it was producing 10 Dreamliner jets per month.

Boeing's delivery forecast shows that the planemaker is on track to deliver a record 715-725 jetliners this year, having delivered 342 in the first half.

The company's net income rose to $1.65 billion, or $2.24 per share, from $1.09 billion, or $1.41 per share, a year earlier.

Core earnings, which exclude some pension and other costs, rose to $2.42 per share from $1.67.

Revenue rose 1 percent to $22.05 billion, missing the average analyst estimate for the first time in six quarters.

Analysts on average had expected earnings of $2.01 per share on revenue of $22.23 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Revenue from commercial airplanes business was up 5 percent, while revenue from its defense, aerospace and security division fell 5 percent.

Boeing's total backlog of $440 billion as of June 30 was unchanged from the start of the quarter, the company said.

For 2014, the company said it expects core earnings of $7.90-$8.10 per share, up from its previous forecast of $7.15-$7.35 per share.

(Reporting by Sweta Singh in Bangalore; Editing by Savio D'Souza and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/140723/boeing-profit-gets-boost-increased-deliveries