Boeing shares close lower on Friday, debris found in fuel tanks of undelivered 737 MAX aircraft

Boeing Co (BA) has discovered debris in the fuel tanks of nearly 35 undelivered 737 MAX planes amid ongoing inspections. According to a report by Reuters, citing a source with knowledge of the matter, debris have been found in nearly 50% of the undelivered 737 MAX jets inspected so far.

Boeing shares closed lower for a sixth consecutive trading session in New York on Friday. It has also been the steepest single-session loss since January 27th. The stock went down 1.75% ($5.90) to $330.38, after touching an intraday low at $330.30, or a price level not seen since February 6th ($325.66).

Shares of Boeing Company have risen 1.42% so far in 2020 compared with a 3.31% gain for the benchmark index, S&P 500 (SPX).

In 2019, Boeing’s stock went up 1.01%, thus, it again underperformed the S&P 500, which registered a 28.88% gain.

“We are taking steps to make sure we eliminate FOD (foreign object debris) from any and all aircraft. This is unacceptable and won’t be tolerated on any Boeing aircraft when it’s delivered to the customer,” Boeing Co said in an emailed statement, cited by Reuters.

A spokesperson for the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said that the regulator was aware of Boeing’s voluntary inspection for foreign object debris. The agency has boosted its surveillance on the basis of initial inspection reports and may take further measures in accordance with the findings, the person said.

Foreign object debris is a term referring to rags, metal shavings, tools or other materials that have been left behind during production process.

Analyst stock price forecast and recommendation

According to CNN Money, the 20 analysts, offering 12-month forecasts regarding Boeing Company’s stock price, have a median target of $350.00, with a high estimate of $440.00 and a low estimate of $260.00. The median estimate represents a 5.94% upside compared to the closing price of $330.38 on February 21st.

The same media also reported that at least 15 out of 23 surveyed investment analysts had rated Boeing Company’s stock as “Hold”, while 6 – as “Buy”. On the other hand, 1 analyst had recommended selling the stock.

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