Airbus Updates Orders; Still Lagging Boeing

Airbus' (NASDAQOTH: EADSY  ) latest orders report, covering sales in May, shows that the European planemaker has booked orders for 70 additional aircraft over the past month.

So far in 2014 Airbus has received:

  • 240 gross orders for A318, A319, A320, and A321 narrow-body jets
  • 34 orders for larger A330 family aircraft
  • 20 orders for super-jumbo A380 jets
  • 12 for the A350 wide-body

This works out to just 306 gross new orders in all. That's 70 more than Airbus had on its books one month ago, but still lagging far behind Boeing's tally for orders collected to date. Taking cancellations into account, Airbus said the net orders it's booked during the first five months of 2014 total 203. This week Boeing reported 394 net orders so far in 2014.

Also worth noting is that Boeing has been having some success in persuading buyers to place orders for its 777 wide-body jet, landing three orders in the past two weeks. In contrast, all 70 of Airbus' orders for the past month were for small, lower-priced, single-aisle jets.

Even worse news for Airbus is that for every three plane orders it takes in, it's still losing about one order to cancellation -- 103 planes canceled so far this year. Again, this is a slight improvement over the orders-to-cancellations ratio we saw at Airbus one month ago. But it's twice Boeing's rate of cancellations.

To date, 11 of Airbus's A319 orders have been canceled, along with 36 A320s, 39 A321s, five A330-300s, and a dozen A350-800s. After subtracting Airbus's 103 cancellations from its 306 new orders, the European plane-maker is left with a net of only 203 new orders so far this year -- barely half of Boeing's net new order tally.

Boeing's latest report showed gross orders taken in since the beginning of the year reached 448. After subtracting 54 plane orders canceled, this left the Seattle plane-builder with 394 net new orders. The company has received orders for more than 100 new planes over the past month.

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  • Report this Comment On June 06, 2014, at 10:14 PM, aktundra wrote:

    Its not likely that Airbus is fretting over less orders in one quarter than Boeing, both plane makers have HUGE backlogs to deliver in the thousands, one quarter does not tell us much about the big picture. Airbus has led Boeing in both orders and deliveries for some time but I still done see either company in any sort of trouble, its disingenuous to suggest that Airbus is in "trouble". You should point out that most of the cancellations for the A320 family jets translates into conversion of options into A320NEO planes, same for Boeing with future delivery slots being shifted toward 737MAX jets and away from the current 737NG planes. If I take away anything I see 20 orders for A380s being a particularly big deal considering Boeing cant give away 747-8s at any price. Its funny to suggest that either Boeing or Airbus scoff at narrowbody orders, the 737 and A320 family are the bread and butter of the business for now and represent the largest percentage of orders and backlog.

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Rich Smith

As a defense writer for The Motley Fool, I focus on defense and aerospace stocks. My job? Every day of the week, I'm monitoring the news, figuring out the winners and losers, and tracking down the promising companies for you to invest in. Follow me on Twitter or Facebook for the most important developments in defense & aerospace, and other great stories.

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