Pontifications: Boeing “transparency”–not so much.

By Scott Hamilton

April 9, 2024, © Leeham News: “Since [Aircraft Certification, Safety, and Accountability Act] ACSAA became law, Boeing has supported implementation of the legislation, including providing full transparency for the FAA’s expert review panel in its evaluation of our safety culture and other safety measures,” Boeing said in a statement responding to questions from The Seattle Times. “Over the past several years, we’ve taken a number of significant actions to strengthen our safety practices and culture. (Emphasis added.)

“We put safety and quality above all else, and continue to make significant changes to our culture, production and processes as we strive to improve.”

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read this in the second major front page article by The Seattle Times dissecting how Boeing has become an industrial embarrassment.

Make no mistake. I want Boeing to be a healthy, thriving company. Commercial aviation needs a healthy Boeing to compete with a healthy Airbus. As a reporter and commentator, I want to balance the negatives with the positives. But since the 2018-2019 MAX crisis, there has been little positive to find about Boeing to write or say.

The reason I couldn’t believe my eyes with Boeing’s statement above, referring to the Federal Aviation Administration’s Expert Panel, is buried within the 50 page report. It also is at variance with decades of my experience, and that of other journalists, in dealing with Boeing.

The Expert Panel

Here’s what the Expert Panel included in its 50-page report. This panel was appointed by the FAA on Jan. 5, 2023—one year to the day, it turns out, before the Alaska Airlines Flight 1282 door plug blew out on climb out from the Portland (OR) International Airport.

Prior to the initial meetings, members of the Expert Panel signed two Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDA), one with the FAA and one with Boeing. More than 4,000 pages of documents received from Boeing were stamped as Boeing Proprietary. The NDAs inhibited the Expert Panel from using assistants to aid in discovery. The NDAs also precluded including proprietary information in this report.

Each interview with Boeing employees started with an opening statement that the Expert Panel was “…very interested in hearing your perspective on each topic.” However, it appeared to some Expert Panel members that Boeing employees viewed the Expert Panel’s work as an audit; not an opportunity to collaborate. Interviewees asked minimal questions of the experts. Some interviewees mentioned a briefing was provided by Boeing legal prior to the interviews. (Emphasis added.)

I don’t know about you, but it’s my personal and observation experience that nothing inhibits transparency more than meeting with lawyers before going into a meeting. The use of Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) is also designed to contain information. Assistants undertaking discovery certainly should have been allowed to assist. Precluding proprietary information from a document that will be issued publicly is a reasonable concern.

Despite Boeing’s claim that transparency has been pursued since the adoption of the ACSAA, the “Speak Up” program hasn’t succeeded, according to the Expert Panel and the FAA. Employees still fear for their jobs and retaliation. Boeing still has an aggressive program designed to track down employee leaks.

Executives in the “bunker”

When the sun is shining, few companies are better at promotion than Boeing. Even so, interview requests for executives by journalists during good times were routinely denied. When times are bad, Boeing goes into the “bunker.”

Stan Deal was named CEO of Boeing Commercial Airplanes in October 2019 when Kevin McAllister was fired in the fallout of the first MAX crisis. McAllister joined BCA as CEO in November 2016. The MAX was already in flight testing and the first one was delivered the following May. All that went wrong with the MAX development occurred before McAllister appeared on the scene. But a scapegoat was needed, and his was the first head to fall.

Deal had his hands full with the MAX grounding, which stretched to 21 months. And, in March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic became a global crisis. He certainly was busy—but it was a full 18 months before Deal did an on-the-record interview with the media. He didn’t do many thereafter, either.

Deal was replaced on March 25 by Stephanie Pope. Pope added the BCA CEO title to her duties as chief operating officer of The Boeing Co. She previously was CEO of Boeing Global Services. She, too, has her hands full. But she’s turned down interview requests, too.

If there is a time for transparency for employees, customers, and, yes, shareholders, it’s now. Certainly, Boeing is limited as to what it can say while government probes of Alaska 1282 are underway, but there’s plenty more to talk about.

Dave Calhoun generally confines his public appearances to super-friendly media and investor days held by aerospace analysts who don’t dare antagonize Boeing for fear of being frozen out of future earnings calls or events.

Non-answer answers

Other executives routinely aren’t made available even when the story being pursued is a benign piece about the supply chain or unrelated to any crisis.

Boeing also routinely provides non-answer answers to media questions, often saying something that has little or sometimes nothing to do with the questions asked. Other times, the “answer” will be, “we have nothing to add.” Then, on occasion after such, the reporter gets a call complaining about how the story was written.

Contrast this with Airbus, Embraer, and even the new GE under CEO Larry Culp. Airbus, under the administration of CEO Tom Enders and his top communications aide, Rainer Ohler, was an open book, so to speak. This approach has tightened under current CEO Guillaume Faury, but Enders and Ohler were unusually open.

Embraer has been and is far more open than Boeing. GE, under Culp and his communications chief, Perry Bradley, has much better media relations than Boeing.

Summing up

I get that Boeing is under siege. All the headlines about flying incidents in recent months being on “Boeing” airplanes are completely unfair—and I’ve told media so who have called for comment. Whether it’s a Southwest Airlines engine cowling separating from a Boeing 737-800 or a wheel falling off a Delta Air Lines Boeing 757 or United Airlines Boeing 777, these aren’t Boeing’s fault. These are airline issues. When a United pilot drives a 737 MAX off the taxiway at Houston’s airport, this has nothing to do with Boeing, the 737, or the MAX. It’s either a pilot mistake or an airport taxiway issue.

But Boeing claiming it’s been “full[y] transparent” is, as the World War II saying goes, a bridge too far. I couldn’t let this one go.

236 Comments on “Pontifications: Boeing “transparency”–not so much.

  1. Let’s recall the memo that Calhoun sent to Boeing personnel at the start of his tenure in 2020. It talked a lot about “transparency”, and contained key points such as the following:

    -Rebuild trust

    -By recommitting to transparency, Calhoun said he plans to help the company rebuild its vital relationships.

    -Focus on Boeing’s values

    -The new CEO wants to foster an inclusive environment.

    -Operate with excellence

    -This requires a focus on delivering a safe product to customers.

    -Maintain production health

    -The company will ensure it’s ready to restart production.

    -Invest in our future


    Total BS, from start to finish.

    “Just ship it”

    • Absolutely. This is how these “men” operate. You don’t get a $45,000,000 please-go-away package for being straight forward and honest with a deep sense of compassion for your fellow man – let alone passengers on your planes. Mario Puzo could have written a great story about these last few decades worth of CEOs at the Boeing Corporation: “Hey, it’s only business.”

    • This comment is not exactly on point, but when Calhoun commented publicly after the Alaska door plug blowout he was quoted saying, “I got kids, I got grandkids…”
      I feel like the $30m plus that Boeing shareholders paid this chump for 2023 entitles them to hear some semblance of grammar when this putz opens his mouth. Would it have killed him to say, “I have children, I have grandchildren….?” No doubt if he were English rather than American (like me) he would have.
      If the board of directors had any cajones it would claw back $10-20m in compensation for the violations of FAA regs and common sense that have occurred under his stewardship and another couple million for violating the rules of grammar of the English

  2. “All the headlines……… are completely unfair”

    Media prosper on being unfair.
    ( and Airbus got the brown end of the stick for decades.)

    But for a long time Boeing had “protection”. not as good as GE ( GE engine issue -> RR shitstorm! ), but good nonetheless.

    But Boeing has crossed the Rubicon in that respect.
    Protection has in a way collapsed.

    • The Rubicon was crossed only because the Alaska door blowout was on a US plane with US crew and passengers. If that door blowout had occurred in a developing country, we’d have had a very different situation.

      • ROFL and yes!

        “Due to incompetent third world under qualified pilots even best of breed Boeing technology could unfortunately not prevent that door blow out.”

      • It is quite unfortunate that Lion Air crash did not happen in US instead. Boeing would not be able to get away with ‘barely literate furriners cannot fly our great planes properly’ excuse (readily accepted by US public), scrutiny would be immediate and the second crash would be probably avoided.

        • In all fairness I doubt other countries react any differently.

          I do agree, the door plug eject hit an interesting area (pun not intended)
          No one was killed fortunately (and yes I have full empathy with those who lost loved ones in both MAX crashes ).

          But it occurred in the right market with a free (if not technically astute press) huge publicity that has legs written all over it.

          And it followed two horrible crashes (not accidents, crashes) that were supposed to have had all the root causes corrected.

          While I hate the phrase, Perfect Storm is the current cultural referee for a chain of events to a disaster that has morphed into a wider context of a chain of events that leads to a reckoning. In this case no one died but two crashes lead up to or into this event.

          The Aviation industry knows what happend to and with Boeing.

          The public does not nor should they. Daily lives and what goes on in them takes precedent over hobbies like following aviation. For most it has no return in a day and age when we have to be computer geeks, financial and legal whizzes just to get by aside from our jobs.

          The politician know that and they play huge games at our expense in that space.

          Now they have to pay attention, the story keeps cascading they now are having to ignroe the bribes (ahem, campaign continuations) and deal in real policy.

          This is also where one of the two major air regulators in the world live and where one of the main LCA are made.

          Ergo, its also where something can get done about Boeing.

    • Uwe:

      Most of your comments are not worth responding to, this one is.

      Unfair is the correct term, but the caveat is Well Deserved.

      In the US there is a phrase, kicking a man while he is down. Now the context is someone that go swamped by nothing he did or had any control over and someone beating on him (or her) again.

      But, some are like rabid animals that should be put down. A person who beats their partner.

      So, if someone beat them into the ground, its not for the right reasons but its well deserved.

      Boeing put itself in this place and the press is going to have a field day.

      The sad part is the press is also what allowed Boeing and the like to be and get to where they are.

      As an technician/engineer my world was based on the use of accurate terms and sloppy press offends me.

      In full world context, Boeing (Management) deserves every smack they get be it their fault or not.

      Drive the lesson home with a steel pin or drive the wooden stake through the Vampire in its coffin and kill the beast once and for all for the sake of Boeing.

    • I agree that right now most of the headlines about Boeing planes are bordering on media hysteria. But I also agree that Boeing executive management brought this on themselves with 20+ years of Welch inspired insanity.
      To modify the Rubicon metaphor slightly, I would say the Rubicon was crossed with the first Max crash. The second crossed the Po, and the Alaska door blowout crossed the Tiber. Are there any major rivers in the Italic penninsula south of the Tiber?

      • The phrase “crossing the Rubicon” is an idiom that means “passing a point of no return”.[1] Its meaning comes from allusion to the crossing of the river Rubicon by Julius Caesar in early January 49 BC.


        • Mr Roboto
          Too Much Time On My Hands
          Suite Madame Blue
          Come Sail Away
          The Best of Times

          Great classic rock band.

  3. Airbus:

    1) Televised annual press conference by Airbus CEO and CFO — open to press and media from all over the world.

    2) Televised press conferences at air shows — open to press and media.


    1) No annual press conference. The Boeing CEO is “protected” within the Boeing top management cocoon.

    2) Boeing CEO: Limited interaction with press and media at air shows.

    3) Quarterly earnings conference calls: The Boeing CEO is taking calls primarily from (friendly) American business news outlets. CEO is “protected” merely by not being visible to the public.

    The only time American CEOs appears to be “available” for critical questioning, seems to occur if they are dragged before a Congressional committee and forced to execute testimony during a legislative hearing or investigation. Only then — in a high-stakes, stressful affair — can the public eventually see an unprotected CEO being visibly uncomfortable and sweating profusely.

  4. Let’s start off with the new era of transparency by having an inquiry into exactly how MAX MCAS came into being and how it survived the development and certification process.So far even the scapegoat has escaped and we are none the wiser

    • It is pretty well known, Boeing under stress and FAA understaffed with qualified engineers. Boeing not following old procedures and FAA not discovering what happened as well as EASA missing what really what was going on between Boeing /FAA. It is actually the FAA that issues the supplemental Type Certificate that the major blame hits. They should have forced Boeing to comply to its old routines way back and EASA should have found out that something fishy was going on before they issued their approval.

      • Boeing being “under stress” (whatever that means) doesn’t explain away the following:
        – A fundamental MCAS design/implementation that was so amateuristic that even an undergraduate engineer could have seen that it was utterly unacceptable.
        – Deliberate attempts to hoodwink the FAA and customers as to the nature/implementation — even the very existence — of MCAS.

        Far too easy to try to pin blame on regulators.
        When a husband cheats on a wife — who had placed trust in him — is that the fault of the wife?
        In retrospect, the wife may have been gullible, but the fundamental culpability lies squarely with the husband.

        • Look at the legal responsabities. The FFA shall check and Boeing follow its own procedures/standards and have an intense communication with the FAA. If the FAA does not understand Boeing will stop communicate and the FAA will be seens as a rubberstamping administration. Their skill is much needed and congress must understad and fully fund.

          • I would bet serious amounts of money that there is a big pile of dirt still hidden under the carpet and dozens or hundreds of Boeing employees or ex employees with their jaws wired shut.Maybe I might die before there is a proper inquiry and I am able to collect my winnings

      • “Boeing under stress” because they had wrong priorities: they wanted to underplay what are the changes they incorporated into the MAX, they wanted a seamless transition for pilots with an hour spent with a tablet, they wanted to avoid pilot training in simulators at all cost, they forgot the importance of safety in aviation.

        • ..that’s aside from Boing spending $60,000,000,000+ on stock
          buybacks, when just a small portion of that money would have been gotten them a much-needed new aircraft.

          No, the “Boeing under stress!” narrative being pushed here is not going to fly: they did it to themselves (and, very sadly, to the employees who actually build their planes).

        • I think it is more complicated than that. First they were in a hurry after AA decided to order the A321neo, the 737MAX engineering organized under 737MAX project management, late discoveries of non-linear stick forces at different flight regimes outside normal operational flights. (that should have been caught in detailed CFD/flight dynamics analysis years earlier) Then Boeing took a detour of making a “hidden software fix” that “operators will never see or need” to pass FAA stick force linearity certification requirements without engineering/FAA going back and redo the whole aircraft FMECA to discover what a single faulty AoA probe will cause.

        • Boeing CFO Brian West: “It’s really about focus and running that business not as a business but as a factory”; “For years, we prioritized the movement of the airplane through the factory over getting it done right, that’s got to change.”

    • Grubbie:

      Lets add to that how the behaviour of the manual elevator trim got “removed” from the Simulators and no one reported it.

      I worked in Simulator support, I saw the extremes that they were required to go to for what is known as Fidelity (that being 100% accurate to a real aircraft)

      We had a cooling unit in the same room as the Simulator and it began to make a fan nosie. I had a solution and got it implemented

      Too late, the Sim Manager hired a contractor to build a baffle box around that unit as it was noted as an intrusion.

      It took years to get a sound test run without the box to prove I had solved the noise problem (balance issue)

      They spent a hour or more each day doing full motion check outs to confirm the Simulator was both good to go and nothing had changed.

      How in that environment of severe and justified attention to detail could no one notice the Manual Stab trim did not reflect the lock up under flight conditions?

      • “How in that environment of severe and justified attention to detail could no one notice the Manual Stab trim did not reflect the lock up under flight conditions?”

        Against what reference dataset is the simulator checked?
        Not a real existing plane flown into that same situation.

  5. I really feel for the Boeing rank and file who have to endure the countless emails touting “full transparency” & “safety and quality culture” messaging from Exco whenever there is a significant event which is the result of the schedule & cost are king culture. THEN they get hit with hrs worth of yearly mandatory training on the importance of ethics, safety, quality blah blah blah…

    • A couple of times I have endured a hunt for a “mole”,once working for a company,once working for a sports team.As you can imagine, the finger was pointed at the shop floor,the vast majority of whom were not even aware of the secret.Of course you can already guess that source of the leak turned out to be senior management ,although we had to find out that via more leakage after the subject was quietly dropped

      • Yep, managers close ranks when its them who are found to be the enemy.

  6. Would be interesting to get some insight as to why they are so tight lipped. Is it plain arrogance? Or is it that internal comms, record keeping etc are so poor that those with authority are frightened what they many not know and decide to keep a lid on everything? Or is it the personal atitutudes of a handful of people (even just 1 person) who set the rules and no-one else challenged them? Or x, y, z?

    From my seat it looks to a significant extent like plain arrogance unfortunately.

    • Normally when top managers feel ashamed they shut up. If they are skilled and confident they show the “the good, the bad and the ugly” and explain how they will solve the last 2 with money, engineering, production, tooling design and automation and not claim they “just need a fix”.

  7. This opacity culture did not start with Calhoun but has existed for a very long time. Here are two high profile exemples: We saw the same lack of transparency and denial with the 747 cargo door issue back in 1989 and the 737 rudder incidents that started in 1991. We can also add to this the Lauda Air 767 midair thrust reverser deployment that occurred around the same time. The Boeing name was very strong back then and they did everything to protect it. They knew how the DC-10 cargo door issues had affected the reputation of McDonnell-Douglas, not to mention the questionable engineering behind the Chicago crash, and certainly did not want a repeat of all that here. The irony is that the latter did a reverse takeover of Boeing not long after that in 1997 and it’s been downhill ever since.

    • Also: two 747Fs lost an engine when fuse pins failed. Evergreen safely returned to ANC. The other crashed into an apartment house trying to return to AMS. No grounding.

      • The El Al AMS crash was strange to begin with.
        A lot of political context was called up at the time.
        ( What freight was on the plane? …. afair the cause never had much impact onto the general public )

        The you can add the TK Polderbaan Crash years later.
        MCAS research brought some heavy influencing of the Dutch investigation team to light.

        In view of all this it would IMHO be advisable to revisit a lot of Boeing crash investigations. Potential outcome: a lot less “Pilot Error” and other 3rd world deficiencies as cause?

        Was the 777 Asiana crash really nothing more than “incompetent pilots” ? ( we saw rather intensive media preparation to make laughing stock of the crew. Back then I thought it was just done in massively bad taste but today … )

        • Ahh yes, the conspiracy theories come out.

          I was missing those, thank you for not disappointing me.

        • All very good points indeed.

          Let’s not forget:
          Japan Air Lines Flight 123 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight from Tokyo to Osaka, Japan. On August 12, 1985, the Boeing 747 flying the route suffered a severe structural failure and decompression 12 minutes into the flight.
          the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board,[3] concluded that the structural failure was caused by a faulty repair by Boeing technicians following a tailstrike incident seven years earlier. When the faulty repair of the aft psi bulkhead eventually failed, it resulted in a rapid decompression that ripped off a large portion of the tail and caused the loss of all on-board hydraulic systems, disabling the aircraft’s flight controls.

          • Lets not forget the Air Canada A320 2015 crash at Halifax airport, where the plane impacted the ground short of the runway despite the crew following the Airline and Airbus procedures after selecting the FBW ‘Flight Path Angle Guidance’ mode

            Essentially the plane flew ‘ uncommanded descent below the pre-programmed glide path’

          • Wrong argument applied to the wrong topic:
            “As a result of the accident, Air Canada revised its incorrect Airbus A320-200 Standard Operating Procedure. ”
            ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_Canada_Flight_624
            gear lost, one engine lost, massive damage, fuselage intact! BUT:
            nobody killed, only one person hospitalized for more than a checkup.
            Its not clear if Airbus (had to) change(ed) anything in the FBW setup.

          • @Duke

            Stop. You know what you peddle has been thoroughly debunked. This is shameless. Read the TSB investigation report. Don’t listen to this poster. AC has a discrepancy in its SOPs and FCOM.

            “Although the Air Canada FCOM identifies the requirement to monitor and adjust the position and flight path, pilots do not have access to this document as a reference. Pilots refer to Air Canada’s SOPs; however, these do not provide direction on monitoring the vertical flight path when the FPA guidance mode is engaged, nor is such monitoring taught in training”

          • And the rest are not?

            Whose debunk fails to win the tin foil hat prize ?

            Good laugh.

          • I’m aware some here genuinely lack the capability of unbiased critical analysis.

          • Now that is valid.

            I wonder how many of the logic thinkers in your view could drive 11 miles in the middle of the night and fix a 1000 amp 460 Volt Transfer Switch (or even know what one is?)

            Or as my astute compadre at the time asked, we don’t even have a sequence of operation, how do you know where to start.

            Well, its obvious if, easy to see if its on the Backup Generators or Utility. If its on one it should go to the other when the timer expires and goodness knows, its had its 30 minutes.

            After that you just tap it mid circuit and see if you have the logic power. If you don’t you know you have to work up electron as it were. If it does, then you jump half way down (you can ball park that) and see what you got.

            Now granted, once I had certain symptoms I did not have to do all that. Just check the Capacitor or the Frequency sensing board mostly (though a few zingers would pop up from time to time, most equipment failure has common failures and then very rare or even once offs).

            Now that frequency sensor board was a sub board, pull it (after you took control power away) and replace it. Saved undoing about 42 other connections though I was the only one who knew that.

            Or the other time the Tech at the Transfer Switch Mfg Company asked (Russellelectric in this case if you want to know) asked, how did you know where that problem in the Main Board Control Center was.

            Me- well you got no sequences of operation but we have the schematics. Yeah it took some hours to walk through it, but by symptom I knew what general area of it was, just a matter of tracking it down.

            Then there are the people with the Illogic Chips. Those you can’t fix.

          • Sorry Pedro, we use Circuit Breakers these days.

            Sense all you want, I spent 35 years in my trade and was good at it.

            But it was all highly technical requiring logical thought and processes and a lot of sweat to master.

            Clearly from the postings here not something many do.

      • Something I have pointed out when people were saying how Golden Boeing was and the FAA having set the gold standard.

        Also keep in mind, some of those incidents were like the ones we are seeing, an Airline issue.

        Evergreen was the Poster Child for nefarious activity. Those pins were not inspected and dealt with according to the book. It was a maint failure not a Boeing failure.

        I believe there was another one in China as well.

        The 737 Rudder Failures were on Boieng as they refused to accept there was a bust in the engineering that would allow that to happen.

        Lauda Air 767 was the same. No one else died (as if the ones that did were not horrible enough) but Boeing fought it tooth and nail instead of like a Fine Engineering Company look at it and, ok, lets start from the basics and see if we can find a patch to failure.

        This all takes context. We had come out of an era of constant crashes (I was present for the ditching off Sitka of a DC6 or 7). An almost impossible flat calm day and no one was seriously injured and the one that was because of the CG insisted on a Transfer of people from the responding , Flight Attendant foot got caught between the responder and the CG cutter.

        Prop jobs disappeared over the oceans with some consistency never to be found a trace of.

        This is a side note, but forgotten history. There was a Military courier on that flight (I believe it was a Military charter). When he got ashore, he no long had his chained to his wrist brief case.

        Then things got exiting. The CG came roaring down to our end of the island armed to the teeth (Biorka, Nav Aids for Air ala FAA and a CG Loran Station – perfect location).

        Seized all the rafts and tried to seize all cool items we had been told we could keep as they are one use. My folks let us keep our small treasures as it was stupid.

        Then they spent the next two weeks combing shorelines. Never found.

        I have long wondered how many years the Courier spent in prison and the investigation of how he had a key to the cuff..

    • A word about the classic 737 rudder PCU. This PCU is a single unit, meaning there’s no redundancy.

      September 8, 1994, the Boeing 737 flying this route crashed in Hopewell Township, Pennsylvania while approaching Runway 28R at Pittsburgh, which was USAir’s largest hub at the time.
      After the longest investigation in the history of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), it was determined that the probable cause was that the aircraft’s rudder malfunctioned and went hard over in a direction opposite to that commanded by the pilots, causing the plane to enter an aerodynamic stall from which the pilots were unable to recover.

      The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the USAir Flight 427 accident was a loss of control of the airplane resulting from the movement of the rudder surface to its blowdown limit.[a] The rudder surface most likely deflected in a direction opposite to that commanded by the pilots as a result of a jam of the main rudder power control unit servo valve secondary slide to the servo valve housing offset from its neutral position and overtravel of the primary slide.

      Sound familiar to MCAS?

      To do this day Boeing denied any responsibility to US AIR F427 saying the classic 737 is perfectly safe with the single rudder PCU.
      An emergency AD was issued and still effective today for mechanics to accomplish daily Rudder PCU checks on classic 737 Prior to flight.

      But….. but when the 737NG was designed it came with dual inputs rudder PCU redundancy.

      • Airdoc
        There is only 1 PCU driving the rudder on the NG, not 2, sort of……… The NG actually has an upper and lower rudder segment, each having a single PCU. Perhaps its a fine point, but there you go. That makes it redundant-ish…

      • The rudder story lasted years with many foreign pilots from developping countries comited suicide !!!

    • The observed tribal / corral mentality is enforced by the US judicial system.

      Absurdly high penalties/compensation gives corporate management motivation to fight legal stuff tooth and nail. ( Add in that the lawyer sphere is void of any moral aspects ) i.e. if there is a lever to push the damaged party under the bus it will be used!

      • Sadly it is, tragically it is.

        6 people were killed when an out of control ship hit a Bridge and you can’t recover maneuvering from a main engine drop out in those conditions.

        But still we don’t protect the bridge or mandate attached tug escort.

        How does where you live stack up?

  8. Was the TWA B747-100 lost on 17 July 1996 off NYC really due to fumes in an empty center fuel tank? I remember reading that no modification would be mandatory because of the age of the remaining fleet in service. I found that outrageous.
    Now, as to Boeing’s media work, I was press advisor to Airbus 1996-2008 and in that capacity attended and worked in every edition of the FIDAE aerospace exhibition and fair in Santiago de Chile. On each occasion, we would bring in an airplane which would be on statis as well as flying display, put up a very large stand welcoming visitors, and would organize a large press conference and host inidividual or group press interviews with the top executives available at the dedicated chalet (usually I was in charge of the interview agenda).
    What about Boeing? BCA hardly ever brought an airplane (which would’t fly anyway) nor put up anything counting as a decent stand and for the most part they were never available to the press, bar a few exceptions. It was not unusual for journalists to come to us and enquire if we knew where the Boeing top brass was.

    • Interesting backgrounder Javier.

      Did you interact much with the BCA people yourself?

      An aside on this. My experience in general of US large business sales is that they used to treat anywhere outside the US as though it really wasn’t outside the US. Barely any recognition that those outside the US would want or do things differently or that they should in any major way move toward the customer rather than the other way around. So maybe BCA sales/marketing were simply being a (of my experience) typical large US business sales/marketing team.

      • Hi Woody,
        yeap, I used to be in touch with BCA Press. In fact, I was hired by Airbus in 1996 when they learned Boeing were interested in hiring me. The Boeing press gang were kind in general but there was one particular detail the regional and local press always took note of – and was a bit irked by: Hardly anyone from BCA PR spoke Spanish somewhat fluently. They simply didn’t care to speak the language. One notable exception was Boeing President Latin America Donna Hrinak, a highly experienced businesswoman with an extensive international background (previously she was in charge of Boeing Brazil) but then again she was Sales, not Press.

        • How many of you speak Chinese, Japanese, Korean or Indonesian?

          I know of an American aka white protestant who speaks flaunt Mandarin Chinese.

          Did he set out to wanting to? Nope.

          He got drafted, was brilliant on language test area, got sent to California Military language school (around Monterey) .

          Boeing does not require foreign languages necessarily and its not part of school curriculum (and how do you decide Spanish is the right one, how about Latino, French, German or ???????????????

          The US school system is not setup for it though it is offered in school as an elective.

          Then you take Spanish and go into sales? Right.

          Or you try to learn it on your own while making a living, raising a family and……..

          Then a crisis hits and Arabic is in high demand. But sigh, its not Spanish.

          • Spanish is one of the most spoken languages by number of native speakers.

          • There are four in-house languages at Airbus: English, French, German and Spanish, with English being the standard at every corporate or industrial facility. Whoever in Sales or PR is assigned to a particular region must be able to communicate in the local or at least one of the regional languages, or have a professional rep in the area that will assist while you learn the language. No one expected the press to know learn the visitor’s language instead. Communication with the press had an enormous importance.
            Besides, the rule was: “we build relationships with each journalist, not this or that medium’s journalists”. This means that once you built mutual trust with a journalist, that relationship outlived their job changes and tended to last forever. This approach to media relations was crucial during a crisis, because the press tended to focus on facts rather than blow the news out of all proportion. Seventeen years after my contract was terminated during an administrative revamp as part of the Power 8 savings program (n the wake of the A380 delays) I still enjoy that kind of relationship with key journalists in the trade.

          • Yea and the point is?

            Spanish is not common in the US, by 2nd Gen the kids are all speaking English.

            You come from an area the size of the East Coast of the US and stuffed all together and each one has its own language. So yea, you gonna get people who speak both and sometimes more.

            No disagreement anyone working in another country should know at least enough to get by as well as fully aware of the cultural norms.

            But its not up to individual to what they are exposed to or where the career takes them.

            English happens to be a world standard from some truly ugly reasons, but its the reality and it gives the world a common standard. There is a reason ATC uses English.

            Norms could have been Spanish for equally or worse historical reasons.

            What we do have is a complete catalog of all languages spoken in the world and can tap that as needed.

            We are the Heinz 57 of the world and personally I am proud of it.

          • @Javier

            ‘There are four in-house languages at Airbus: English, French, German and Spanish’

            How very Swiss of them. I wonder how the Italians feel about being left out. Then there is Romansch, but I digress…

  9. Hmmm today April 9- Boeing released the annual report and proxy statement
    The proxy is only 111 pages- and it will take time to go thru the dreck.
    Annual meeet friday may 17 and is/will be a virtual meeeting- hopefully the trash 80 BCS system will not be overloaded- and it makes it easy to keep out the unwashed.

    Items of Business
    1. Election of the 11 director nominees named in this proxy statement
    2. Advisory vote on named executive officer compensation
    3. Ratification of the appointment of Deloitte & Touche LLP as Boeing’s independent auditors for 2024
    4. Five shareholder proposals contained in this proxy statement, if properly presented
    Shareholders will also transact such other business as may properly come before the meeting and any postponement or adjournment thereof.
    Your vote is important to us. We urge you to vote as soon as possible, even if you own only a few shares.
    This proxy statement is issued in connection with the solicitation of proxies by the Board of Directors of The Boeing Company for use at the 2024 Annual Meeting of Shareholders and at any adjournment or postponement thereof. On or about April 5, 2024, we will begin distributing print or electronic materials regarding the annual meeting to each shareholder entitled to vote at the meeting. Shares represented by a properly executed proxy will be voted in accordance with instructions provided by the shareholder.
    By order of the Board of Directors,
    John C. Demers
    Vice President, Assistant General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
    Important Notice regarding the availability of proxy materials for the Annual Meeting of Shareholders to be held on May 17, 2024: this Proxy Statement and the 2023 Annual Report are available at http://www.proxyvote.com.
    Website references throughout this document are provided for convenience only, and the content on the referenced websites is not incorporated by reference into this document.
    Time and Date
    11:00 a.m. Eastern Time Friday, May 17, 2024
    Virtual meeting at
    http://www.virtualshareholder meeting.com/BA2024
    Record Date
    March 27, 2024

    1. Election of the 11 director nominees named in this proxy statement
    2. Advisory vote on named executive officer compensation
    3. Ratification of the appointment of Deloitte & Touche LLP as Boeing’s independent auditors for 2024
    4. Five shareholder proposals contained in this proxy statement, if properly presented
    Shareholders will also transact such other business as may properly come before the meeting and any postponement or adjournment thereof.
    Your vote is important to us. We urge you to vote as soon as possible, even if you own only a few shares.
    This proxy statement is issued in connection with the solicitation of proxies by the Board of Directors of The Boeing Company for use at the 2024 Annual Meeting of Shareholders and at any adjournment or postponement thereof. On or about April 5, 2024, we will begin distributing print or electronic materials regarding the annual meeting to each shareholder entitled to vote at the meeting. Shares represented by a properly executed proxy will be voted in accordance with instructions provided by the shareholder.
    By order of the Board of Directors,

    (ITEMS 4 — 8) 89
    Shareholder Proposal – Review of China
    Business and ESG Commitments (Item 4) 89
    Shareholder Proposal – Report on Climate Lobbying (Item 5) 91
    Shareholder Proposal – Racial and Gender
    Pay Gap Disclosure (Item 6) 94
    Shareholder Proposal – Report on Risks
    Related to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
    Efforts (Item 7) 96
    Shareholder Proposal – Adoption of Value
    Chain Emission Reduction Target (Item 8)

    • I note a good friend of mine John Chevedden has submitted a shareholder proposal- and as usual- the company is against it. John is quite the coporate gadfly and well known across corporate america a˜d a few years ago was the subject of a WSJ article . The experience matrix of the Bored is interesting. I’ll make some pertinent comments later

  10. I work in a different regulated business and it astonishes me Boeing can dictate the terms of its engagement with its regulator.

    We’re taught to give answers that are specific, accurate and complete to our regulator, who can ask any questions it wants.

    • The bigger you are the more clout you have and the less competition you have the more you can get away with it.

      Its worth reading the Judges finding on the Maconda Debacle.

      Something like 7 safety systems were bypassed to get the end result of a blowout, any one adhered to would have prevented.

      And the ultimate stupidity was the drill crew saw the gas kick on their (one gauge when it should have been 3) and decided the gauge was wrong. They also did not swap gauges.

      That final bit of stupidity killed them. They were at the face of the drilling op and they died.

  11. Perhaps the only question about this nonsense is whether or not anyone in a so-called “leadership” role at Boeing actually believes the things they say. Several times in my life I’ve encountered people whose brains work quite differently from that of most. They tell a lie that everyone hearing it knows is a lie, but once the words are out of their mouth they behave as though they actually believe what they have said. It’s a curious pathology.

    In another related behavior, some people, especially in sales, do not use language to convey the meaning of the words they use, but rather for the impressions and reactions they are trying to create in others. These folks actually seem to have no concept of lying. For them, language is something radically different than what it is for the rest of us.

    Both of these pathologies seem to be rather common in Boeing these days.

    • Or the Quote, you tell a lie often enough it becomes the truth.

      Those of that Ilk make it an art form.

      In this case the system fails because its become corrupted with people of the same Ilk.

    • Retired TF, Exactly right. This pathology is well known and has a name it is called “magical thinking”. It is a hallmark of the anti-social personality disorders. Studies have shown that different forms of ASPD (i.e. psychopathy and sociopathy) are extremely prevalent in corporate leadership. Boeing seems to be an acute case, as the size of the company and the long lead nature of the products is a perfect ground for these types to hide, relocate, and prosper. See, for example, the works of Bruce Gibney, Paul Babiak, etc.
      (I have been enjoying your videos on YouTube. Excellent work. The pace is a little too slow for some viewers but I have been enjoying them).

  12. Wow.

    Just in:
    F.A.A. Investigates Claims by Boeing Whistle-Blower About Flaws in 787 Dreamliner

    ‘ Mr. Lewis said Boeing had done extensive testing on the Dreamliner and “determined that this is not an *immediate* safety of flight issue.”

    “Our engineers are *completing* complex analysis to determine if there may be a long-term fatigue concern for the fleet in any area of the airplane,” […]

  13. Let’s see how transparent Boeing will be about this next exposé:

    NYT (also CNBC): “F.A.A. Investigates Claims by Boeing Whistle-Blower About Flaws in 787 Dreamliner”

    “The whistle-blower, an engineer, says that sections of the plane’s body are being assembled in a way that could weaken the aircraft over time. Boeing says there is no safety issue.”


    Press conference by whistleblower and his attorney coming later today.
    According to Phil Lebeau on CNBC, the issue relates to fuselage barrel joining.

    • NYTimes:
      “Mr. Salehpour, whose résumé says he has worked at Boeing for more than a decade, said the problems with fastening the sections came about as a result of changes in how the enormous sections were fitted and fastened together in the manufacturing assembly line. The fuselages for the plane come in several pieces, all from different manufacturers, and they are not exactly the same shape where they fit together, he said.”

    • Boeing statement about the New York Times story

      – “We are fully confident in the 787 Dreamliner. These claims about the structural integrity of the 787 are inaccurate and do not represent the comprehensive work Boeing has done to ensure the quality and long-term safety of the aircraft. The issues raised have been subject to rigorous engineering examination under FAA oversight. This analysis has validated that these issues do not present any safety concerns and the aircraft will maintain its service life over several decades. We continue to monitor these issues under established regulatory protocols and encourage all employees to speak up when issues arise. Retaliation is strictly prohibited at Boeing.”

      – 787 Manufacturing: “A 787 can safely operate for more than 30 years before it would need to enter more conservative maintenance routines for extended service. The full service life could be as long as 40 to 50 years depending on the operator and their maintenance plan. Since the 787 program launched 20 years ago, we have worked to improve our production processes and incorporate the latest manufacturing techniques. This continuous improvement has resulted in higher quality and has had no impact on durability or safe longevity of the airframe. Our team’s work has included exhaustive testing and analysis to ensure that manufacturing process updates maintain the performance, full projected lifespan and strength of the airplane. There are thousands of different join-up points across the airplane. We have detailed design specifications that define allowable gap and fit up force at any given join. This can vary from join to join and location to location. The comprehensive approach used to evaluate improvements to our production process includes and encourages dissenting viewpoints. This work has been completed with full transparency and under the oversight of the FAA.”

      – 787 Join Verification: “In 2021 and 2022, as a result of employees identifying and sharing conformance items on the 787, we slowed production and stopped delivering 787s for nearly two years to take our time to get things right and ensure each met our exacting engineering specifications. We incorporated the join inspection and verification activity into our production system so that airplanes coming off of the production line meet these specifications. For the in-service fleet, comprehensive Boeing and FAA analysis determined there is no near-term safety of flight concern, and our engineers are completing exhaustive analysis to determine any long-term inspection and maintenance required, with oversight from the FAA. Based on the analysis and any future inspection, the 787 will maintain its strength, durability and service life.”
      Benefits of 787 composites and lifespan – attribute to Boeing
       The 787’s fuel efficiency and in-service performance are made possible, in part, by the use of carbon composites, a lighter and stronger material than aluminum. The 787 is more than 50% composites by weight, and its construction and engines reduce fuel use and CO2 by as much as 25% compared to the previous generation.

       Another benefit of the 787’s composite structure is the material does not fatigue or corrode like traditional metals, which reduces maintenance over many decades in service.

       The 787 is certified to operate safely for a lifespan of 44,000 cycles of pressurization, equivalent to 44,000 flights, with operators following a prescribed maintenance plan. In service, a 787 currently flies about 600 flight cycles per year on average and will operate safely for many decades before retirement. The highest-cycle 787 in service today is a 787-8 with about 16,500 flight cycles since it was delivered in late 2012.

       To confirm performance and lifecycle of the composite 787 fuselage, from 2010-2015 Boeing tested a full-scale fuselage and a forward fuselage section simulating up to 165,000 cycles of pressurization – about 3.75 times the jet’s designed lifespan of 44,000 cycles – with no findings of fatigue. For comparison, flight cycles of pressurization and depressurization are the contributors to fatigue on metal airplanes.

       Boeing’s 2022 Statistical Summary of Commercial Jet Airplane Accidents shows there has not been a 787 accident since the airplane began revenue service.

      Resumption of deliveries in 2022 and addressing the in-service fleet – attributed to Boeing
      In August 2022, the FAA approved Boeing’s resumption of 787 deliveries based on an extensive analysis of join verification engineering data.

      Boeing had to demonstrate that 787s that have gone through the join verification process conform to all design requirements prior to delivery. The FAA determined in 2022 that Boeing had a full scope of join verification work that must be done to inspect and rework these inventory airplanes – about 120 airplanes total. Many of these airplanes have already been reworked and delivered. Boeing 787s in production today, and those delivered after August 2022, are built to meet the updated specifications that were established based on years of data, validation, testing and analysis and acceptance by the FAA.

      Additionally, the FAA is an integral part of the rigorous process for reaching a recommendation for dispositioning the in-service fleet. As part of the process of understanding the best path forward for airplanes delivered prior to 2021 – about 980 airplanes – Boeing conducted a thorough and conservative assessment of capability and durability that showed the fleet was safe to continue operating while work continues to define the long-term plan. The assessment methodology and results were shared with the FAA.

      Based on the previous fuselage testing up to 165,000 cycles and Boeing’s extensive data gathering, testing, modeling and analysis from 2020 to today – shared transparently with the FAA – Boeing currently expects these issues will not change or affect the expected lifespan of the 787 fuselages.
      – Assessment of a specific metal component on the 787 remains under analysis to understand potential stress corrosion; while no stress corrosion has been observed, current expectation is that the company will recommend for FAA approval and potential mandate that operators complete an additional inspection to ensure there’s no long-term safety impact.

      787 Dreamliner fatigue and strength testing – attributed to Boeing. See video of testing.

      The multi-year 787 test program was more robust than any conducted on a previous Boeing commercial airplane. While the FAA and other regulatory authorities require the company to do this testing for certification, Boeing has its own more demanding standards for certain parameters. Testing is taken very seriously because it gives the company and its customers confidence for the life of the program.

      To confirm performance and lifecycle of the composite 787 fuselage, Boeing tested a full-scale fuselage and a forward fuselage section simulating up to 165,000 cycles of pressurization – about 3.75 times the jet’s designed lifespan of 44,000 cycles – with no findings of fatigue. The cycles of pressurization and depressurization are the contributors to fatigue on metal airplanes.

      That full-scale fatigue testing (see video) spanned from August 2010 to September 2015. Supported by a 1.2-million-pound (544,000-kilogram) test rig, the airplane’s wings, fuselage and tail were attached to load fittings. Hydraulic jacks then applied loads to the airplane, which pushed and pulled the wings and fuselage to simulate all phases of flight and evaluated the durability of the airplane in a variety of conditions over lifetimes of service. The loads applied were up to 150% of what the airplane would ever experience in service. During each second of testing, thousands of data points were collected to ensure that all parts of the airplane performed as expected.

      With data analyzed during five years of fatigue testing, Boeing looked at and validated the robustness of the airplane and applied learnings to fine-tune maintenance recommendations for customers. Test results validated earlier modeling and associated expectations about the robustness of the 787 design and composite fuselage.

      Timeline of testing
      1. August 2010 to September 2015: Full airplane full-scale fatigue test.
      2. September 2008 to March 2010: Series of limit and ultimate load conditions.
      3. Additional fit-up force testing at LN 86: Testing conducted on 787 Line Number 86 in late 2012 utilized strain gauges to measure the effects of various additional fit-up forces in the join of the forward fuselage (Section 41) to the midbody fuselage (Section 43).
      • This testing confirmed no negative effects on the structure and helped inform the use of additional fit-up forces at that join beginning in early 2013.

      4. Nov. 2020: Extreme localized gap condition testing (ultra-short wave).

      5. Aug. 2020 to present: Re-validation testing of fatigue testing and static testing through join verification.
      • This included more tests, strain gauge monitoring, and analysis of findings by Boeing and suppliers conducted in the same timeframe.

      787 Type Certification – attribute to Boeing
      – Boeing received FAA type certification for the 787 Dreamliner in August 2011. The eight-year certification process for the 787 was the most exhaustive and rigorous certification effort ever undertaken at Boeing, not surprising given the range of new technologies, systems and materials embedded in its transformational design. The design of the 787 incorporates nearly a century of aviation learning and safety improvements. At the conclusion of the process, the FAA reported that its staff logged 200,000 hours of technical work on the 787 type certification. Boeing employees exceeded that mark while showing compliance with more than 1,500 airworthiness regulations and presenting 4,000 documents comprising test plans, flight test reports and safety analyses. Boeing employees also demonstrated compliance with over 16,000 federal requirements relating to inspection, test parts and setup.

      • Wonderful that Boeing is “fully confident” in the 787 — however, the FAA seems to have somewhat less confidence, as evidenced by the reported investigation into the whistleblower allegations.

        Both Boeing and the FAA were also “fully confident” in the re-certified 737MAX — until the Alaska Airlines blowout.

        Confidence is a subjective and fickle thing.

      • Actually,I have to say, that is a really good press statement!

        • Yep.

          If they can lie about X they can lie about Y.

          Face it, we are Guinea Pigs.

        • It’s a lengthy example of the genre

          Is it correct? I thought that the FAA had obliged then to stop 787 deliveries. It may have been a cooperative thing with the company and regulator?

          But dear holy stasis, one word from the regulator now could lead the world to lose all faith in anything Boeing has built. If it turns out that, despite the FAA crawling all over the 787 program there’s still things that the company knew but hadn’t revealed, well goodness me there’d be a row. I doubt that’s the actual case. I hope that’s not the actual case.

          • concerted effort produced by a battalion of lawyers?

          • Matthew:

            They were crawling all over the MAX program and the door blank eject occurred.

            We then find out it was all paper audits.

            The powers that be know how much I lied on my paperwork. It was an art form (and I am not an artist by the way)

            In my (crew) case, if we were working on something they forced us to lie about it because we got grief for doing the right thing contrary to the paperwork.

            Because I did it, I knew the lies for what they were and I could spot one a mile away and did when people then lied about actually having done something and were pencil whipping it.

            Its like ISO 90000 or whatever that monster is these days (14,000?). Has nothing to do with quality and all about the paperwork being perfect.

            The ships bottom falls out and sinks? Its all good, the paperwork is fine. It just accurately documents garbage build.

            So no, the FAA gives me no comfort.

          • Actually, they said: “They were crawling all over,” these planes.

          • The reality of the 787 halt is Boeing Speak at its best (note what the initials would work out to!)

            The FAA did not halt the delivery of the 787.

            They did refuse to sign off a delivery unless it met the mfg spec that Boeing listed in its mfg certificate .

            Nope, Boeing halted it, because them as they could not deliver them to spec.

            Kind of like The Standoff at High Noon except the Sheriff had a shotgun.

            It only took them two years.

          • Reuters 2022:
            “The U.S. government* on Monday approved* the first Boeing 787 Dreamliner for delivery since 2021… ”
            Essentially what it’s saying is FAA had halted delivery of the 787 since 2021.

    • Interesting- It would be appropriate to know more about the whistleblowers background- where he worked in the ‘join’ process, etc. FWIW- the 7late 7 was designed nearly 20 years AFTER the major wing and body sections of the all composite B2 were designed and fabricated at Dev center ( Seattle 9101 bldg across from musum of flight. Wuz there then. Tail section of 777 was the next major composite section built by BA. And 777 body ( aluminum ) used a relatively new tecnique of hydrauilic jack points controlled by computer and laser measurements to ‘ twist’ sections in to shape to match other section during join. That being said- I suspectd the major problem was that his biggest problem resulted from how management responded instead of having a sit down and discussion with responsible people. As far as life cycle- I have no real concerns..

      • Agreed, its the details that are important for public safety.

        But, you gotta love the headlines.

        The Corporate Playbook has failed but there is the effort to appoint another do nothing (with board dynamics involved)

        This could be an unhappy employee getting back at Boeing who has set themselves up for it so no sympathy at all.

        Now its a question of, do they try the new CEO smoke and mirrors or do they start to fix the company?

        You would need recordings of the board meetings to know that.

    • More details regarding the 787 (and also 777):

      “Salehpour’s attorneys said the FAA was surprised to discover through his complaint that the gaps were still an issue.”

      ” “I literally saw people jumping on the pieces of the airplane to get them to align,” Salehpour said. “By jumping up and down, you’re deforming parts so that the holes align temporarily … and that’s not how you build an airplane.” ”

      “The whistleblower complaint said he pointed out to management the existence of drilling issues with the 787, and was then “ignored and ultimately transferred out of the 787 program to the 777 program.” ”

      “In his new role, Salehpour said he discovered subpar work with aligning body pieces, and pressure on engineers to green-light work they have not yet inspected.”

      “In all, Salehpour said the issues involve more than 400 777s and 1,000 787s.”


  14. Looking forward to Boeing’s commentary on the following:

    “Boeing plane deliveries fell off a cliff last quarter”

    “Boeing delivered the fewest planes in almost three years last quarter. The company said Tuesday that only 83 of its jetliners made their way to customers from January through March — the lowest number since 2021, when production was still recovering from a pandemic-induced slowdown.”


    • Absolutely. This is how these “men” operate. You don’t get a $45,000,000 please-go-away package for being straight forward and honest with a deep sense of compassion for your fellow man – let alone passengers on your planes. Mario Puzo could have written a great story about these last few decades worth of CEOs at the Boeing Corporation: “Hey, it’s only business.”

    • Q1 2024 deliveries:

      737 – 67
      767 – 3
      787 – 13
      Total – 83

    • I would venture to guess that there will be a “massive” charge at some point with the CEO transition. Generally speaking a new CEO is going to want to clear all the skeletons out of the closet.
      Realistic development costs and timeline of new aircraft; accounting block changes, forward losses and other impairments from fleet sustantainability. Let alone writing off orders that were iffy at best

      • Scott can tell us if that is true per the last 4 CIO (chief incompetent officer)

        As the board does not have the details at hand, if it occurs it will be after a CEO is appointed and gets the financials figured out.

        And is it a dog and pony show depends on who and what the CEO is.

  15. > Commercial aviation needs a healthy Boeing to compete with a healthy Airbus.

    Is this really true? I think what commercial aviation REALLY needs is healthy competition among manufacturers; It seems like the only thing that’s going to lead to significantly positive change at this point is if more manufacturers figure out how to enter the market.

    Calhoun is now quoting $50 Billion for their next aircraft development program, 10x what the original 777 cost to develop. With all of the advancements in design and engineering technology over the last 30 years, does it really make sense that it’s now 10x MORE expensive to design something than it was back then?

    The duopoly model is inherently unsustainable and is the result of bad business practice. The industry needs more competitors in the field before it can heal.

    • Next Monday, we dissect the $50bn figure. When full context is looked at, it’s not a silly number.

      • Let’s look at that number for a sec, but from the ROI side of it;

        We’re going to ignore the 8-10 year time value of money (as $3 billion spent 8 years ago is worth more that $3 in today’s funds) so let’s just say it’s $50 billion.

        If you look at both OEM’s financials, a 10% margin is a good benchmark to use. So to re-coup that $50 billion, you have to sell $500 billion in aircraft.

        Let’s say you can get a max for $50 million today.
        100 Max’s = $5 billion.
        1,000 = $50 billion.
        10,000 = $500 billion.

        (if you push it to $60 million, averaging the price for the program, meaning you’ll get about half at $60 million and below and half between $60 and $70 million – it’s still 8,333 aircraft)

        …and you’ve broken even.

        787 @ $150 million?


        (and for those who think BA can make money on the 787, remember the program was run up in the DPB to some $28 billion PLUS whatever was spent in R & D to make it. Call it $40 billion)

        Derivatives, here we come!


        Mind you;

        It sounds like to me that both BA & AB (with their recent comments) are lining up to get public funding to help out.

    • I would say Airbus and Boeing are gradually ceasing to compete. Airbus is said to no longer be looking at Boeing to envision and shape the future. Boeing is on the brink of missing the train of modernity, no matter how much the western world needs them.
      So history could repeat itself in a reverted mode: In the mid-60’s, Europe decided it needed break the virtual monopoly of the US-based commercial airplane industry. Now the monopoly ball is rolling toward their court but no sizeable – much less a dependable – competitor appears on the horizon.

    • Airbus was quite content with the A320ceo and Boeing with 737NG until Bombardier entered the market. Those two aircraft would have not have launched without competition.

      Take away Boeing and what incentive does Airbus have any longer? China? That is a solid 10+ years away.

    • The reality is that LCA are so expensive no one can afford to get into the club.

      Yea I know, some people bring up COMAC, but if you think Boeing is non responsive, they are going to be far worse. Its a bloated operation with money no object but that does not buy capability.

      They would not even do what was required to get EASA or FAA recognized certification and the FAA tried really hard.

      Oddly Russia did have it (C929) but that has been revoked.

      Boeing is the best of what is left and it has potential to be a good number 2, but it needs a board and a CEO that wants success vs pillaging the company.

    • sigh. Just can’t help yourself no matter what Scott writes and we all know that is not a Boeing issue.

  16. Scott, great analysis on the ever Boeing crisis…

    I’m a Air War College graduate, which is another name for strategic leadership. One of the huge points they drive home is two way communications. During WWII, Patton and Eisenhower both practiced two way vertical communication. If you ever wanted to be ripped apart by Patton, just be a yes man. Both Generals did not want information passed through 10 levels to get to them. One too slow, too altered to save someone’s career, etc. They would go down and talk to the grunts on the front line. Ike would take his rank off and go talk to the sergeants and privates. He told them to be blunt, tell him what is wrong or what is working good.

    Boeing leadership sits in their high-rise C-Suite formerly in Chicago and now Virginia. I doubt ANY of the board or anyone above a VP ever stepped foot on any of the factory floors. They point fingers and I’m glad to see the airlines demanded change. But until Boeing stops being an financial company that builds airplane and returns to being a engineering company again; nothing will change but the names on the doors. Airbus has its problems too, but Boeing’s are far worse right now. I hope they can turn it around before its too late.

    • Spot on.

      I am not sure about Patton and Ike, that gets to be a political arena as well as military. I know Patton did not like being told no.

      But the 3rd Army was a smooth running machine and was by far the best of the Allied group.

      I worked for a bank entity for a number of years (mechanic systems repair and maint) and the President never came out of his office.

      He was able to slide on the fact that it started small and grew and the people promoted were the original group that were capable.

      His buddy was shifted through 4 or 5 departments as he was a complete looser.

      He was involved with one of the branch managers and she and I crossed swords and my foreman made it clear I had better apologize as it was one I was not going to win.

      He ran financials and had no interest in the rest. The only good news was other than the two uglies, he did not have a cadre of them.

  17. For the sake of variety
    Can China’s Comac break up the Airbus-Boeing duopoly?

    “GallopAir, a new Brunei-based airline, is the first carrier outside of China to order the C919. They have ordered 15 C919s and 15 ARJ21s, Comac’s small jet aircraft. ”

    “As a customer and operator of China’s Comac products, we can get financial support from China’s import-export bank, and also central banks,” Cham told CNBC in an interview.”


    • Very interesting!
      So, that’s yet another country (in addition to Indonesia and Malaysia) that isn’t interested in whether COMAC planes are certified by the FAA or EASA.

      There’ll be more to come: Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Mongolia, Iran,…all adds up.

      • In theory if EASA accepts CAAC certification for the type, it’s certified in all Europe…

        But yes, Boeing are losing out.

        And so are Airbus. They’d dearly like those sales for itself, but just can’t make enough of the A320neo.

        • EASA requires the system in place to prove it, not take China word that we did it all right.

          If you think Boeing has issues with EASA cert, COMAC will spend the next 30 years trying to pull the wool.

          The FAA did give it a huge effort and gave it up as hopeless as NONE of the systems was in place for it to be certified.

          Yea I know, the chorus group out there that will say the FAA did not try. It was before China started claiming oceans and the US was interested in cooperation. You do have to wonder why anyone would want to undercut themselves but……

          Mitsubishi failed and they were trying hard.

          But as there are no new aircraft for them to work on, it would be a great make work project for EASA in how to reject bad submitals.

          • What’s your experience in dealing with EASA specifically? 😁
            Not anything else please.

      • In fact if you look at who owns what its Chinese.

        What happens when you want to fly into a real market (Korea) and they tell you no, your aircraft are not certified?

        And when the first one crashes?

        Oh, and they will get their aircraft in about 2035 at current production rates.

        The C919 economics will be behind but if you don’t have competition? Or a cut rate operation?

        Or half your aircraft are sitting on the ramp because you don’t have the spares or COMAC has no world wide service.

        Vietnam will not buy any by the way. They know a bad deal when they see it.

        Yes sir though , Iran is a big hitter in the Aviation world as is Burma. You forgot Cuba and Zaire.

        • You pick the right one hehe.
          “In the late 1990s, Korean Air was known for being “an industry pariah, notorious for fatal crashes” due to its extremely poor safety record as one of the world’s most dangerous airlines. In 1999, Korea’s President Kim Dae-jung described the airline’s safety record as “an embarrassment to the nation” and chose Korean Air’s smaller rival, Asiana, for a flight to the United States

          Between 1970 and 1999, several fatal incidents occurred. Since 1970, 17 Korean Air aircraft have been written off in serious incidents and accidents with the loss of 700 lives.”

        • @TW, you are behind the times. Zaire no longer exists it is now known as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR Congo), and it has been so renamed for over 2 decades (1997).

          • Well I could call it Rhodesia as well. Change your dictator and change your name.

            Zaire is not the mouthful that the DRC (nor is it accurate)

            So think of Zaire as a stand in like the US is for the United States of America.

    • So a startup airline in Brunei has ordered 30 chinese airliners.

      No doubt like the Indonesian airline they are ‘extensions’ of the chinese leasing company who really owns them. The Lessor which is then connected to Comac
      Vendor finance and the lessor funding makes makes it seem easy easy. I guess they can fly in Indonesia for now

      • Where is the evidence? All inside your head??

        Any worse than in the early days of Boeing, Boeing Aircraft & Transport Co., merged with Pratt & Whitney Aircraft in early 1929 to form United Aircraft and Transport Corporation (UATC).
        UATC formed the corporation United Air Lines, Inc. to manage its airline subsidiaries.

        P.S. I recall Boeing did make a sweetheart deal and loaned $400m to Alaska to help finance its purchase of Virgin, secured by commitments to purchase 737 MAX!

      • Nope, if you trace ownership back it all comes from China.

        And delivery in 2035 with those highly reliable long lived Chinese engines, guaranteed.


  18. More transparency to look forward to:

    “Congress summons Boeing’s CEO to testify on jetliner safety amid new whistleblower charges”

    “A Senate subcommittee has summoned Boeing CEO David Calhoun to testify about the company’s jetliners in an inquiry prompted by new safety-related charges from a whistleblower.

    “The panel said it will hold a hearing next week featuring a Boeing quality engineer, Sam Salehpour, who is expected to detail safety concerns involving the manufacture and assembly of the 787 Dreamliner. The subcommittee said in a letter that those problems could create “potentially catastrophic safety risks.”

    “Boeing would not say whether Calhoun plans to attend the April 17 hearing. In response to a query from The Associated Press, a spokesperson said only that the company is cooperating with the subcommittee’s inquiry and has “offered to provide documents, testimony and technical briefings.””


    Really looking forward to Mr. Calhoun’s opinion as to whether “jumping up and down on panels in order to get them to fit” is an acceptable part of any high-tech manufacturing procedure, such as in aviation…assuming, that is, that Mr. Calhoun deigns to actually attend the hearing.

    • This is an interesting one.Can you rely on ordinary employees to report that they think they might have heard a cracking noise while doing something that they really shouldn’t have been doing with composite components?Are their supervisors actually going to do anything even if they do?You have to think hard about issuing stop/go gauges,because, nature being what it is,a large part of the work force considers them to be a challenge rather than a measurement and insist on forcing them or even beating them

      • Grubbie:

        I have worked with those various gauge types.

        At .005 you cannot even begin to hammer one. You need something about .125 to even think of a gentle tap with a small hammer.

        And destroying a valuable tool you have to account for ?

        I am not saying Boeing managers would not try to force issues, but you have to go through a mechanic to do so.

        Their calculations can certainly be suspect in being selective just as they were with MCAS.

        I have no issue with Kicking Boeing management where it hurts.

        It would take multiple layers of complicity to get a boloxed assembly done.

        The Exit Blank eject was a gap in the system, not a hashed assembly.

        There seems to have been quality issues with bolts on other MAX-9, that has been reported as loose and not defined.

        777 has been built for so long that bad desingn is impossible (including being torn down) but assembly of course can be an issue and the FAA is right (at last) to take a look at it.

        Well actually the FAA has done so little that is right they now have to CYA to try to do the smoke and mirrors from their end.

        As I have stated, audit of paperwork is pure BS. You only know if you are on the floor and have an inkling of what you are inspecting.

        • Depends on the type of hole or material. I have seen it with my own eyes and people forcing drilling jigs is almost inevitable if there is any problem with getting them to fit properly

          • Grubbie:

            Purely in ref to gauges and ones thin as a human hair at that.

            You could put a 787 in a trash compactor to, but it would be kind of obvious.

            Tools are checked in and out and damage is noted and abuse is not going to be tolerated by the Tool Pusher, its their butt if they have bad tools in the Cage. Nope, I ain’t taking that gauge, you go talk to Mr X, I have noted the ID and damage.

          • @TW

            Oh in a perfect world!

            There’re stories from whistle-blowers that managers picked up defective/scrap parts and put them back for installation on aircraft.

            ‘In North Charleston, the time crunch had consequences. Hundreds of tools began disappearing.’ ‘Some were “found lying around the aircraft”.

            Managers had been pushed to cover up delays. Managers told employees to install equipment out of order to make it “appear to Boeing executives in Chicago, the *aircraft purchasers* and Boeing’s shareholders that the work is being performed on schedule, where in fact the aircraft is far behind schedule”.

            FAA said it had found “improper tool control” and the “presence of foreign object debris.”

    • The Allied Pilots Association is not amused:

      ” ‘Airplanes Are Not Like Ikea Furniture’: American Airlines Pilot Sounds Alarm On Boeing Mess”

      “American Airlines pilot and spokesperson for the Allied Pilots Association Capt. Dennis Tajer has voiced serious concerns regarding new safety allegations about Boeing Co. 787 aircraft.

      “What Happened: During CNBC’s “Last Call” on Tuesday, Tajer described the Boeing situation as a “mess,” criticizing the assembly quality of the planes. This has led to a drop in trust from passengers, regulators, and operators.

      ““Airplanes are not like Ikea furniture, you can’t just press them to fit and then jam in a securing bolt. If this is what happens, and is very delicate…I shouldn’t say delicate, but precisely engineered composite material and you didn’t analyze whether it would impact it, then we’ve got a problem,” he said.

      “The remarks from the pilot’s representative come amid escalating scrutiny over Boeing’s manufacturing practices. The aerospace giant is set to face a Senate subcommittee investigation into these fresh allegations.

      ““When they are reaching the surface to breathe some air, they just go right back under because they are wearing cement shoes,” he concluded.”


      Very transparent comments there from Capt. Tajer. I wonder if Boeing will issue any form of transparent retort?

    • This is the hole Scott’s article is pointing to about Boeing digging this hole for itself. If nothing comes from this investigation, will news articles be retracting?……………………………Didn’t think so.

      • ‘If nothing comes from this investigation, will news articles be retracting?’

        If nothing comes of it because BA does not co-operate and refuses to provide answers (like the whole “We don’t know who worked on the door and the video is gone. Sorry”) – does it mean that they are exonerated?

        Also, if they can somehow finagle a sweetheart of a prosecution agreement, like they did with the Texas DA, who somehow magically went to work for a Boeing legal firm right after (because Texas has so much to do with where BA makes it’s aircraft, or has it head office or where it’s biggest commercial aircraft plants are located) – does that mean they are also exonerated?

        Nah – it just means they have really good lawyers and they know how to work the system.

          • Perhaps because the question is implicitly hypothetical and rhetorical: where Boeing is concerned, smoke always leads to fire…

      • williams:

        Boeing has its big boy pants on and they elected to put out shoddy product for greed.

        The benefit is that not only Boeing but corporate US gets exposed and its way past time.

        They think we exist for them when in fact they exist at our behalf and they have corrupted the legal system to achieve that.

        Some are a lot more equal than others in their world.

      • Well, it depends on whether anyone is going to go look for damage in the fleet on the back of this.

        Previously it seemed that the FAA was involved because Boeing had been incorrectly shimming the barrel joints.

        As part of that I guess they surveyed random in service aircraft to inspect their joints, to get a feel for the scale of the problem. That would have involved some non destructive testing of the aircraft joints – an ultrasound, etc.

        However we now have reports of workers jumping on parts to get them to fit, and cracking sounds. That to me suggests delamination has occurred elsewhere in the structure. That then suggests that any retrospective NDT that was done on the joints might not have been extensive enough to find problems elsewhere.

        Cracking sounds. Eeek. That implies there could be 787s flying around that have layers of composite that have already separated in the factory.

        If no one goes looking for this, no one is going to find it, and the next coverage we will have of the matter (if the problem is real) is when a 787 bursts in flight killing everyone on board.

        However if the FAA is forced to commission a fleet wide survey with more extensive NDT, that’s temporary withdrawal from service, strip back, a lot of work, reinstall. That alone is going to inconvenience a lot of airlines. That’ll get reported. And if they find problems…

        So does one act on the word of this latest whistle blower?

        My view is that a worker who has stuck his neck out this far, being one of many to have done so, must not be ignored. It’s pretty well established public knowledge that the very early barrel sections had to be heavily manipulated to fit (not even being round). That, and this report, accord.

        So, what will the FAA do? If the EASA phone up for information, what do they tell them?

        • I was just suggesting what if cracking noise’s were heard?
          I work with composites , not in the aircraft industry, I’m hoping it’s significantly different.It’s hard to say whether certain nasty noises have done any damage or not and the natural instinct of someone who might have rucked up is self denial.
          If you are jumping on a large composite section you are making quite a bit of noise and you might not even hear the sounds of disaster.

        • Its pretty easy.

          You talk to the whistle blower and get the specifics.

          Then you go look at the areas listed as well as do an analysis if possible as well as observe the assembly.

          Measure the parts, they have specs and if not in spec they should be rejected.

          No question you don’t believe anything Boeing says, you should have people on the floor. Flaw is FAA seems to have swallowed their own bull of paper audits so we will have to see.

          You are not going to be able to hide stuff like that.

          But a lot of people would also have seen it and know it was or is going on.

          Just a matter of going through the whole situation logically.

    • From WSJ-
      Boeing Reveals Executives Got an Extra $500,000 in Private-Jet Perks

      Plane maker revises disclosures for personal trips by CEO and other executives after Journal investigation.

      Did he ever find renton until this year?

  19. Reuters: Airbus shareholders meet amid strong jet demand

    “Airbus began an annual shareholders meeting on Wednesday basking in strong demand as rival Boeing grapples with a slew of recent crises, but facing “supply chain challenges”.

    Winning Strategy:
    AB shares is up 16% year-to-date while BA shares lost 29%.

  20. More great transparency:

    “Ex Clinton advisor Declan Kelly consulting on Boeing CEO search: ‘Doesn’t know planes, but he knows disasters’ ”

    “Former Clinton adviser Declan Kelly has been quietly helping troubled manufacturer Boeing as the company faces a slew of safety concerns, The Post has learned.

    “Kelly — who resigned from his consulting firm Teneo in 2021, after accusations of inappropriately touching six employees at a charity event — had been advising Boeing former CEO Dave Calhoun on his communications strategy for the last two years, sources told The Post.

    “Now, Kelly is working with the Boeing board of directors to find Calhoun’s replacement.

    “Sources said they are baffled by that decision.

    ““The many major issues Boeing experienced since 2020 on Calhoun’s watch forced him to resign effective at the end of 2024,” one Boeing insider told The Post. “That the person who helped him in that role would help find his successor is madness” ”


  21. “US regulator conducting new interviews with Boeing on 737 MAX 9 door plug probe”

    “WASHINGTON: The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is conducting a new round of interviews with Boeing and Federal Aviation Administration personnel this week in its probe into the January Alaska Airlines 737 MAX 9 in-flight emergency.

    “NTSB Chair Jennifer Homendy on Wednesday said investigators were back at the 737 plant in Renton, Washington, this week for more interviews.

    “We are looking at other instances where a door plug was opened and closed to make sure that those records are available,” Homendy said at a US Senate hearing, saying investigators want to make sure those instances were documented.”

    “Homendy said investigators are also looking at what more could be done and at the planemaker’s safety culture. She said the NTSB could conduct a safety culture survey at Boeing.”


    • “At issue is the process not the individuals, she said. “This isn’t a gotcha on anybody,” Homendy said, adding the NTSB has still been unable to interview the door plug team manager, who has been on sick leave.”

      • “.. who has been on sick leave..”

        in a coma from a road accident?

        • The manager is in Boeing Witness Hiding program.

          And it does not matter. You got the records of who was on the job the day it occurred and you interview them.

          The manager is meaningless other than a quick ref. He did not invent the system. Said manager will be using the system they are given.

          And duh that they have to go back, all those records of any work on the Door Plugs should have been pulled already.

          I am not the least bit impressed with Homendy. She is coming across as a publicity hound.

          • ..” And it does not matter. You got the records of who was on the job the day it occurred and you interview them…

            And the current version of ‘ the dog ate my homework ‘ is
            Our computer system crashed because the janitor turned off the wrong switch and records over 90 days ago were somehow lost.

          • What is the goal here? If it going to change anything knowing who and what?

            We know what happened and the FAA knows it has to review mfg from start to finish.

            Boeing has to implement a system that tracks and manages not a chat system for that purpose.

            Is anyone going to prison?

            The goal is to get aircraft that are built safely and we know they are not currently with all the flaws being allowed to propagate to Renton (in this case)

            DOJ will prosecute and its only the hold up in deliveries that is going to get anything done, unless the prosecution takes down the board CEO etc.

            The FAA just keeps telling them your system is not good enough until it is.

            Boeing will comply because they have to.

            The rest is in motion and we won’t see the end result for years.

        • Figured the safest place was the funny farm- hopefully without nurse Mildred Ratched . . .

          • When you think of great movie villains, you come up with Darth Vader, Hannibal Lecter, HAL 9000, Amon Goth, Hans Gruber, Norman Bates…

            …but sitting at #5 on some lists is:


            Louise Fletcher won an academy award for the performance. Pure evil she was…

  22. Cargo glut: Boeing presently has 11 777F gliders sitting undelivered, and now we know why…

    “Cargo airline sends new Boeing 767 freighters directly to storage”

    “The company behind Northern Air Cargo has taken delivery of two widebody freighter aircraft this year and immediately placed them in storage because there isn’t enough business to operate them profitably despite the improved outlook for the global airfreight market, FreightWaves has learned.

    “The decision represents the latest case of an all-cargo airline throttling back on fleet expansion plans made during the COVID crisis when a shortfall in shipping capacity sent rates through the roof and made freighters valuable assets.”


    Here’s an article on the 777F gliders:


      • From your link:

        “The situation is somewhat ironic, in light of decisions by carriers like Air Canada, LATAM and Cargojet to cancel their orders for 777 cargo planes, and by the cull of freighters in the fleets of FedEx and Amazon. In recent weeks, the number of grounded 767 freighters has grown considerably, but they are not viable for transpacific operations, explained Mr Wraight.”


        Quiet phone call to GE:
        “No rush with those engines…we’re not sure we have (m)any takers for them” 🤔

      • @DoU

        It’s Graham Allison again.

        “Inconvenient facts:
        China’s real GDP (growth minus inflation) is now 20% larger than it was before the COVID pandemic. The US economy has grown by only 8%.”

        • “Despite narratives about weak consumption, Chinese consumption (real per capita) rose 9% last year while incomes rose 6%.”

          “Contrary to the belief that investors have lost all confidence, private investment increased about 10% in 2023 when excluding the real estate sector.”

    • What happened? I wonder why the delivery of Eva 777F can’t took place on or before March 31? First flight on Mar 27, second flight on Apr 1.

    • Around the end of March
      “14 [777] are on the flightline or in the factory undergoing traveled work”

    • FedEx is looking at “thinning pilot ranks”.

      How many 767F FedEx has on order?

  23. More transparency on display:

    “Boeing spent US$500,000 more than it previously disclosed on personal private jet trips for top executives”

    “NEW YORK – Embattled airplane maker Boeing disclosed it lavished an additional US$546,000 on the cost of personal air travel in recent years for four top executives, including CEO Dave Calhoun, who announced last month that he will leave the company by the end of the year.

    “The increased spending estimate, disclosed in a recent company filing, brought the total cost to the company for the personal air travel for the four to US$1.9 million since 2021. Besides Calhoun, the other executives include CFO Brian West; Stan Deal, who recently departed as CEO of its commercial airplane unit; and Theodore Colbert, the CEO of its defence, space and security business.”

    “The air travel is part of what are known as perquisites, or perks granted the executives, which also include ground transportation, lodging and meals during personal travel.

    “And for air travel, the reported costs includes only the incremental costs to Boeing, such as fuel, crew travel expenses, on-board meals, landing fees, and parking costs. It does not include the cost of the corporate jets or the salaries of the flight crew, which Boeing said it would be paying whether or not the executives made the personal trips.

    “The cost of personal air travel by Calhoun alone came to US$979,000 during those three years.

    “The upward adjustment means that Boeing spent at least US$734,000 in 2022 and US$306,000 in 2021 on these executives’ personal air travel, according to figures provided. Some of the amounts for air travel for Colbert and Deal are not broken out for the earlier years, despite the increased cost now being reported for those years for all four. And 2023 personal air travel costs for the four came to US$872,000.”


    • Good stuff- thank you.

      My big question for the moment is: what on Earth makes Ms. Stephanie Pope qualified to run BCA; it what particular ways (if at all) will she be an improvement over the last guy, and why so? That installation / anointment looks quite
      strange to me.

      • ‘ My big question for the moment is: what on Earth makes Ms. Stephanie Pope qualified to run BCA;”

        Started at mcDouglas
        Bean counter
        Same as previous CEO and a few bored members

        All that matters

    • Good thing they gave up the Everett Yacht!

      Of more concern to me is the report in NYT about Spirit and adhoc methods of assembly of the 737.

      The Dishsoap thing is a weird aspect of the assemblers having tried all sorts of stuff. Why would the floor guys be doing that? Not their job and while it was eventually approved, the gasket would have had an mfg approved lube.

      Using key cards as a gauge because nothing else was working, ok, again, not their job, the engineers should have done that.

      If I was going to use an variant of oil, it was either speced for the job or I got the mfg approval that it met the requirements (often there are 6 oils that are so close they just pick one).

      Aircraft assembly is not the place to experiment.

    • You don’t think Calhoun would stoop to flying commercial when he has to leave his enclave in New England, do you? After all, he might end up on a Boeing plane and who would want to risk that?

      • Frank P: You got it all wrong.

        1. No Royalty wants anything to do with the unwashed masses. Some like the UK have to do it for publicity to get them to keep paying for people playing dress up but the real shakers and movers, no.

        2. He is stuck, Airbus or Boeing? Argh, call the Private Jet. Multi problem solver.

  24. Some transparency from Spirit Aerospace:

    “A Boeing supplier says it tried using Vaseline, cornstarch, and talcum powder to lubricate a door seal before settling on Dawn dish soap: NYT”

    “Besides the soap, FAA auditors say they saw Spirit mechanics use a hotel key card to check a door seal.

    “Spirit said both practices were approved by Boeing and the FAA.”

    “Spirit told The Times that Boeing had approved both practices. The company added that the soap and the key card-like device were documented for use under FAA’s standards as factory tools, also known as shop aids.”


    • Seems like there is an Echo here. I posted that along with what should be happening not the sky is falling part.

  25. https://twitter.com/LeehamNews/status/1778802447743623447

    “In a new note from @jpmorgan , Analyst Seth Seifman writes “Cirium first flight data for 1Q24 was well below the stated production rate of 5/mo.” @Boeing ‘s 737 MAX production has long been subject to fewer than announced. Now it’s also clear the 787 production doesn’t meet rates.

    “Seifman estimates new production rate for 737 is just 15 per month, far below the stated rate of 38/mo.

    “[…] He does lower cash flow estimates.

    • @williams

      Boeing Shares On Longest Losing Streak Since 2018

      “The ceaseless turmoil at Boeing Co. has put the planemaker’s shares on their worst run in more than five years, harking back to when its 737 Max aircraft was involved in a deadly crash off Indonesia.

      “Boeing shares are down 34% year-to-date, making it the second worst performer on the S&P 500 Index. On Friday, the stock dropped for the 10th straight session, putting it on track for its longest losing streak since November 2018. […]

      ‘“Boeing’s first-quarter delivery announcement confirmed what the market has come to accept over the past two to three months, which is that the pace of activity at its Commercial Airplanes segment is slow,” Seth Seifman, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase & Co., wrote in a note on Thursday.

      “The path forward on production is not very clear, and while demand should allow for significant growth over time, investors should keep nearer term expectations in check,” the analyst added. Seifman lowered his price target on the stock, but kept his buy-equivalent rating.’

      “Overall, Wall Street analysts are turning cautious. The share of buy recommendations on Boeing shares is now at the lowest since November 2021, hold ratings have almost doubled this year and the average price target has fallen 14%, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Meanwhile, earnings expectations have tumbled. Analysts’ average 2024 adjusted profit estimates have *dropped a staggering 83%* over the past year, while revenue expectations have taken a 5% cut. […]

      ‘ “A lower multiple is justified given uncertainty and risks related to the management change and ongoing investigations,” said Ronald Epstein, an analyst at Bank of America Corp. “Further, we feel there is downside risk to our cash flow projections.” Epstein also lowered his price target on Boeing this week. […]

      ‘ “The company will be able to continue to benefit from the robust global air travel demand environment and, in the long run, benefit from improved quality assurance,” BofA’s Epstein said. “In the short- to medium-term, however, there are risks.” 🙂


      Can the stock stay above $170??

        • Boing stock should not be above $100, given their present situation.
          But that company has friends in high places, no doubt.

          I wonder how the MAX7, MAX10, and 777-X are coming along; setting aside for the moment all the problems with their (nominally) in-production

          • But but but… Boeing has all these orders and customers are eager for their aircraft. /s

          • While I agree on the stock price, having friends in high places does not explain it.

            Its called Market stupidity. Keep it upper in your mind that Boeing is not the only entirety with a stupid manager.

            I remember when Costco was knocked down because they were being too generous to their employees.

  26. Looks as if the parking lot is going to fill up again…

    From the link:
    “Analysts and Reuters interviews with suppliers show Boeing is largely continuing to take deliveries equivalent to a production rate of 38 jets a month, the cap imposed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) following the blowout, even though its monthly output is well below that level.”

    Taking current deliveries at ca. 15 per month, we thus get 38-15 = 23 parked planes (or parts thereof) per month.
    So, after just 3 months, an increase of almost 70 birds out in the parking lot.


    “Boeing said it cannot comment due to the quiet period ahead of its April 24 quarterly earnings.”

  27. Keesje
    Respectfully, the size differences beyween the 2 aircraft make direct comparrisons somewhat meaningless. The A350 will excell when its load gactor is above 60%. Same for the 777X. The problem becomes this. The 777x has the potential to generate more revenue, hence profit if you can fill it. This is the same dillema that hurt the A380, its tremendously route sensitive. The A350 on the other hand is far less route sensitive, and therefore a far more reliable profit center. Personally, I think the 777x will be Boeings A380, a fabuluous airplane in search of a profitable deployment scheme……. OBTW, Im a big fan of the 350s independent composite panel buildup scheme, it works better in my mind than large barrels……..

    • MTOW of the TXWB-97 powered A350-1000 has increased significantly over the last decade; from 308 metric tonnes to 322 metric tonnes, allowing Airbus to raise the range from 7950 nautical miles (nm) to 8900 nm. Hence, a 9 frame stretched, 79.5 m long A350-1000 (i.e. the stretched A350-1000 could be designated the A350-800 XXLWB) — with the fuselage being stretched by 5 frames ahead of the wing and 4 frames aft of the wing — should be able to match the 777-9 in payload/range and capacity (i.e. cabin area of around 360m2 for both the 777-9 and the notional A350-800 XXLWB).

      The situation now is significantly different than it was in November 2013 when Boeing launched the 777X programme at the Dubai Air Show: Boeing has lost more than half a decade of 777X production and there still seems to be a significant number of serious issues present with the 777-9, and with an exceedingly low number of test flights that are currently being undertaken on the programme, something seems to be really fishy. This level of delays is highly unprecedented in civil aviation. Except for insinuating that part of the blame is to be found with overly eagerly regulators at the FAA — Boeing is not forthcoming, at all, in explaining in detail what is primarily causing the massive programme delays.

      Therefore, because of all the improvements done to the A350-1000 over the last decade, a highly competitive, stretched A350-1000 (i.e. A350-800 XXLWB) is much more of a feasible undertaking today than it was back in 2013 when Boeing launched the 777X programme. The main difference being, of course, that Airbus doesn’t have to wait for the Ultrafan engine. The soon-to-be-available and improved TXWB-97 engine seems to ready for the stretch:

      Upgrades are also planned for the higher thrust XWB-97, which received criticism at the recent Dubai Airshow from Emirates President Tim Clark who effectively ruled out an order for Airbus A350-1000s if Rolls-Royce does not come up with major improvements. “This is a staged program based on a series of technology insertions coming into the engine going out to 2028,” McDonald says.

      “In the end, by 2028, versus today, in the harshest of conditions we’re going to double time-on-wing through these technology insertions and on the normal benign operations we will improve it by 50%. So today, we really don’t have a problem on benign operations, but we want to get ahead and stay ahead because what the airlines want is durability.”


    • The A350-1000 has a much lower OEW than the 777-9 (15+ tons), which represents a significant opportunity to reduce trip mile costs.

      Further, in terms of seating, an A350-1000 can essentially carry as many passengers as a 777-9, except at the very highest load factors; in particular, with 10-abreast seating, the A350-1000 comes within 5% of the 777-9 (at full nominal load for both). For such a small difference, you can ask yourself how worthwhile it is to constantly lug around 15+ tons of pointless OEW in the case of the 777-9. And how often does one see a 95% load factor on 777-300s nowadays? Emirates and Qatar regularly manage it on some very popular routes, but I’ve been on plenty of Emirates/Qatar flights with lots of empty seats around me.

      As regards the XWB-97 engine: how come Qatar never complained about them? Qatar has an identical climate to Dubai, and Al Baker was a notorious nitpick.

      • “The A350-1000 has a much lower OEW than the 777-9 (15+ tons), which represents a significant opportunity to reduce trip mile costs.”

        Now make that OEW difference 30+ tons.. A reality that probably created havoc in Leeham’s performance comparison model. Giving GE9x sfc benefit of the doubt & cramming in more seats only goes so far to balance the difference.

        The big airlines value dual source policy and successfully operate their 77W fleets but see these numbers too.

        The 777-9 is very heavy & it doesn’t go away.

        • Yes, I’ve read OEW differences of 28 tons in the past, but decided to keep it conservative (15+) because I didn’t have the most recent data.

          28 tons is a lot of dead weight to be lugging around. It equates to 250+ average passengers, including their luggage. No wonder Leahy used to tease that a full A350 weighs less than an empty 777X…

    • The 777-9 with the 777-8F will be a good start but as they gain experience a 777-10 will come and have a huge success on slot constrained airports. The A350 will use its lower mass on the longest routes but 777-9/-10 will dominate in Dubai/Doha/Delhi/Mumbai/Bangalore/Hyderabad.

      • ‘a 777-10 will come and have a huge success on slot constrained airports. ‘

        As I recall, that was the thinking over at Airbus when they launched the A380. How’d that work out for them?

        • We won’t even ask where Boeing is supposed to find money for a luxury such as a 777-10…

      • OTOH passengers, especially those who can afford to pay, would pick shorter, direct flights when and where they’re available.

  28. https://finance.yahoo.com/news/boeing-ceo-search-frontrunner-insiders-110000283.html

    Fortune interviewed sources that include past Boeing executives and current and former high-ranking figures in the aerospace industry to get their take on the qualifications needed in a new leader, and the candidates the board is most likely favoring right now. All of them chose to speak on background. On the sudden resignations and shake-up at Boeing Commercial Airplanes, they generally agreed that the board was responding to pressure from both airline customers and the FAA. Four days before the big reshuffling, airline CEOs made the extraordinary request to meet with Kellner sans Calhoun. “When your customers say they want to meet with your chairman, you know they want change at the top,” says one person to whom I spoke, and who added: “The board realized that the FAA can make things harder if today’s leadership stays in place.” Said a second source: “When all these guys at the top are immediately replaced or retire at the first opportunity, it would appear that the FAA had a hand in that.”

    • Don’t forget the USAF: they were also probably calling for an executive change — being sick and tired of sub-standard kit and empty promises.

      And the FAA was also openly tired of Boeing: it publicized its discontent with the SSAs being submitted for the MAX-7/10, and openly expressed frustration at the level of experience/competence of the liasons with which it had to deal at Boeing. And then on top of that, we got the “just ship it” exposé, and the whole pantomime regarding the door plug blowout. Hard to think that the old board was taking the FAA seriously.

      • As per the link, Dave Gitlin had nothing to do with Goodyear Tire Corporation. UTC bought Goodrich Aerospace. Obviously, Fortune Magazine must have dumped editors and fact checkers for Web content…

      • Abalone:

        No on the USAF. They got their fixed price contracts and stuck with it and they know it.

        Besides, they have the F-35 ever roiling and increased cost debacle to deal with.

        Now that is a high crime against Aircraft if there ever was one.

        Top in the USAF is as bad or worse than Boeing Top.

    • Well they better hurry on their selection for the new CEO. As soon as the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed on Calhoun’s golden parachute he’s out of there. The only other reason he’s sticking around is to add to his personal stash of pencils and toilet paper.

    • Thanks for that yahoo link, Williams. Quite a bit of apparently new info there.

  29. Beyond the many different tones of all the valuable comments above (which I have read with great interest), I feel very sorry for the tens of thousands of honest people who work in that company run by dubious types.
    I wonder if we’re going to see BCA collapse inwards even further before its crisis ends up resembling the Chernobyl reactor meltdown.

    • I hear you, JL- and so far I see little to be optimistic in this latest restructuring of Boing (Ms. Pope as new, improved head of BCA? Deludere, deludere..).

      I’d be happy to be proved wrong, but I see that company as being headed nowhere, fast. Bryce was right..

  30. Jens Flottau of AW: “… The interesting thing is, from the Airbus point of view, is that they are no longer looking at Boeing with regards to their own development plans, they’re just doing their own thing. That’s a position of strength that Boeing can only dream of.”

    • I think we’ve talked about this here;

      All Airbus should be focused on is 1) producing the best defect free aircraft that labour can make and 2) work on increasing the production rate.

      The XLR should be coming out this year and for the next few years it should be nose to the grindstone and focus on quality & deliveries.

      Boeing still needs to make the next move, in any direction – to counter the imbalance.

      • Don’t forget that Airbus has a hydrogen R&D project running…so it’s already taking a potential next step

      • MK 2 c series is probably next up,assuming that they can make it make sense financially

  31. Interesting headlines by different agencies.

    Boeing to Urge New 787 Checks Linked to Jet’s Multiyear Review

    “Speaking to reporters at the company’s 787 factory in North Charleston, South Carolina, Boeing engineers said they’re recommending detailed visual inspections of the part after turning up potential safety issues during a review. There are roughly 1,100 Dreamliners flying commercially.”

  32. “Furthermore, the subcommittee asked the plane maker to provide information about the Fit Up Force or One-Up Assembly Process of the 787, the Fuselage Automated Upright Build (FAUB) Process of the 777, everything related to any previous 777 and/or 787 fuselage issues, grounding documents pertaining to the two widebody types, and any information about previous concerns raised by employees working with 777 and/or 787s.”

    Interesting they are questioning the robot assembly of the 777 fuselages when it was operating

  33. “Airbus A350F launch customer CMA CGM Air Cargo orders another four aircraft”

    “Specialist airfreight carrier CMA CGM Air Cargo has announced that it has placed an order for four Airbus A350Fs, in addition to the four A350Fs the carrier ordered in 2021. All eight of the new planes, for which the company will be the launch commercial customer, are expected to be in service by the end of 2027, allowing the company to offer its services on a global scale for the first time. ”

    “To date, Airbus has confirmed orders for 55 A350Fs from airlines including Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, and its latest customer, Starlux of Taiwan. ”


    Interesting trend of late: legacy 777Fs are getting cancelled, whereas A350Fs are getting ordered…

    • Now there is a laugh of the day.

      A lot of Freighters are getting cancelled or parked. In the case of the 777F, deferred by FedEx.

      The Bright Cargo people just knew the freight situation would roll on forever and ordered accordingly.

    • “United fleet update: Converted portion of 737 MAX 10 orders to MAX 9 from 2025 through 2027, with rights to increase.

      LOI to lease 35 Airbus A321neos with *CFM* engines expected in 2026 and 2027.

      Expects just 61 narrowbody and 5 widebody aircraft to be delivered in 2024.

      “As aircraft manufacturing delays piled up, United had contractual aircraft commitments of 183 narrowbody aircraft for 2024. By the beginning of 2024, only 101 were expected. With Boeing’s latest issues, that number drops to just 61.”

    • Any lessor who secured a bunch of orders for delivery in this decade, when the Neo family was announced, is laughing all the way to the bank.

  34. “More @Boeing labor troubles: Company firefighters rejected 2nd contract offer 4/15. IAFF I-66 expects to be locked out before May 3, the 1st day they could go on strike. $BA is advertising for replacements, offering about $16k/mo. If they strike 5/3 it would be… the 1st IAFF strike in the US in 40 yrs.


    “IAFF strike could affect production– @IAM751 could honor picket lines, bringing production to a halt. Would deliveries (such as they are) also grind to a halt? Flight tests?

  35. FT: Why Boeing chief’s $33mn pay is hard to justify

    BA, being an US company, probably would care less. Am I right?

    • Mister Calhoun spends several years running Boing into the ground (rather like some of their planes?), then skates off with $20-30 million, depending on whose figures you trust.

      Nice work if you can get it..

    • “It is hard to believe that anything could render Elon Musk speechless. But when news broke that outgoing Boeing chief executive Dave Calhoun had been given a 45 per cent increase in total pay last year, the Tesla boss could only respond on his social media platform X with an exclamation mark. […]

      Calhoun took over as chief executive in 2020 in the wake of two fatal crashes that revealed serious flaws in the company’s safety culture and operations. Yet despite repeated assurances that Boeing was addressing the bad old habit of focusing on financial returns at the expense of engineering expertise, a close reading of a proxy statement published this month shows how little has been accomplished, at least when it comes to annual incentives.

      “In 2023, the Company Performance Scores for all three business units were weighted 75 per cent towards financial performance and 25 per cent towards operational performance,” Boeing said in the document, published this month ahead of May’s annual general meeting.

      It took the Alaska Airlines incident for the board to rethink that approach, the document reveals. For the commercial aircraft division, the metrics have been tweaked to base 60 per cent of the annual awards on operational performance and 40 per cent on financial targets. The conditions remain in favour of financial performance for other divisions of defence and space, and global services. […]

      Boeing benchmarks executive pay against packages at other big US companies such as ExxonMobil. Last week Exxon revealed that its chief executive, Darren Woods, had received remuneration of $36.9mn last year, slightly more than Calhoun and almost four times as much as the heads of Shell and BP. But Woods presided over the company’s second most profitable year. That is not the case at Boeing.

      Boeing does not benchmark its chief executive’s remuneration against the most obvious peer, Airbus, perhaps because pay packages in Europe are generally far less generous than in the US. Airbus’s chief executive Guillaume Faury is no exception. He received less than €6mn in pay and share awards for 2023, a year when Airbus continued to outperform Boeing.

    • Nice. And to think that Boing could’ve had that superb, forward-looking aircraft..

      “nah, too hard; we’ll do more PR-chaff instead.”

      • The Sonic Cruiser was in fact pure chaff, nothing more than a PR exercise.

          • some design selections ( like the wonder batteries ) seem to have carried over from the Sonic Cruiser.

            Additionally, IMU and IMHO the Sonic Cruiser was a
            prerequisite for the PR success of the Dreamliner:

            Credibly convert “Super Speed” into “Super Efficiency”, sexy all over! The PR side of things was handled with perfect acumen.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *