United Continental Holdings Inc. said Tuesday it was buying 25 new 737-700 aircraft from Boeing Co. , in addition to a previous order of 40 737s, as part of its effort to update its fleet. The air carrier said it was accelerating the retirement its 747 fleet of aircraft from scheduled service by the end of 2018. As a result, the company said it will convert orders for 787 aircraft originally expected to be delivered in 2020 into four 777-300ER aircraft and five 787-9 aircraft beginning in 2017. "Retiring the 747 fleet and replacing those aircraft with more customer-pleasing, current generation aircraft creates a more reliable and efficient fleet that provides a better overall experience for our customers traveling on long-haul flights," said Acting Chief Financial Officer Gerry Laderman. UAL's stock, which was inactive in premarket trade, has gained 0.5% year to date, while the S&P 500 has lost 2.1%.
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