Airbus takes crown as No. 1 planemaker: Report

Boeing fell behind after grounding of 737 Max

Airbus delivered a record number of planes in 2019, taking the top spot, as rival Boeing was forced to halt shipments of its best-selling 737 Max after two deadly crashes, a report said.

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Airbus shares rallied on the news.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
EADSYAIRBUS SE29.472-1.52-4.90%
BABOEING COMPANY271.80-15.96-5.55%

Aircraft shipments by Leiden, Netherlands-based Airbus rose 7.9 percent year-over-year in 2019, reaching a total of 863, Reuters reports, citing airport and tracking sources. A company spokesperson declined to comment on the unaudited figures.

Chicago-based Boeing, meanwhile, saw deliveries plunge after 737 MAX crashes that killed 346 people. Shipments through November totaled 345 jets, down 51 percent from a year ago.

Boeing’s numbers are likely to continue suffering since the planemaker has frozen production of the Max as it works to obtain Federal Aviation Administration approval for the aircraft to resume commercial flights. The agency is evaluating a patch for anti-stall software that investigators linked to the crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia.

The number of deliveries is important for planemakers’ bottom lines as they receive the bulk of their payments upon when they turn jets over to airline customers. 

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Airbus shares gained 55.4 percent in 2019 while Boeing shares were up 1 percent.