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Boeing inches towards goal with $8.25 billion order from GE | Reuters

Boeing Co (BA.N) said on Wednesday it had received a firm order for 75 of its 737 MAX 8 aircraft, valued at $8.25 billion at list prices, from General Electric Co's (GE.N) commercial aircraft leasing and financing arm.The order, which Boeing said it booked in 2016, means the world's biggest plane maker clinched at least 531 net jetliner sales last year, pushing it closer to its target of selling as many planes as it delivers.Boeing has said it expects to deliver between 745 and 750 commercial jets this year. Through November, Boeing had delivered 681 planes. Investors watch orders closely as a way to gauge future production and revenue, since Boeing earns the bulk of its money when aircraft are delivered. The company has orders equivalent to about seven years of production, but the majority are single-aisle 737 planes, and sales of widebodies remains sluggish.Boeing's order tally could climb again on Thursday, as the company posts its final update for 2016.

Through December 20, it had booked 470 net orders. Since then, it has announced orders for four 737-800s by On Dec. 27, Delta Air Lines (DAL.N) said it was cancelling an order for 18 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. The order was placed by Northwest Airlines before it merged with Delta in 2008.Tallying those changes, Boeing's book-to-bill ratio is 0.77, below the target of 1.0. A Boeing spokesman declined to comment, citing a quiet period before fourth-quarter earnings on January 25.

Boeing Chief Executive Dennis Muilenburg affirmed the target in July. In December Boeing said it would cut output of 777s by 40 percent this year due to slow sales.The deal for 75 Boeing 737 MAXs increases firm orders from GE Capital Aviation Services for the latest generation 737 to 170, Boeing said. The planes are powered by LEAP engines made by CFM International, a joint venture between GE and Safran SA (SAF.PA) of France.

Boeing has received 3,419 orders for the 737 MAX so far. The first 737 MAX is expected to be delivered in first half of 2017. Boeing's shares were up about 1 percent at $158.49 in early afternoon trading. Up to Tuesday's close, the stock had risen 11.7 percent in the past 12 months, compared with a 12.2 percent rise in the S&P 500 index .SPX. (Reporting by Alwyn Scott in Seattle and Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Ted Kerr and Chizu Nomiyama)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date: Jan 05, 2017 01:30 AM

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