Airbus has finally won more orders for its A380, the world's largest commercial airliner, six months after announcing a two year production delay. Still, Boeing has widened its lead in '06 orders in the meantime, and Airbus' breakeven point is considerably higher than before. In consecutive days, Qantas Airlines and Singapore Airlines announced orders for the 555-seater. Qantas ordered eight additional A380s on top of its original order of twelve. Singapore Airlines added nine orders and six options to its original order of ten. A London-based Morgan Stanley analyst who rates Airbus' parent EADS "overweight," commented that the Singapore order is "further confirmation that Airbus is on its way back." Also, orders for Airbus' A320 were announced by Singapore Airlines' regional carrier and Israir Airlines. Airbus said the A380 is not expected to breakeven until delivery of the 420th plane, compared to 270 based on a business plan last year. Year-to-date through Dec. 12, Airbus has received 635 orders, versus Boeing's 865.
• Sources: Press release (I, II), Bloomberg, Seattle P-I
• Related commentary: Boeing Continues To Succeed at Airbus' Expense, Boeing Lands Big Lufthansa Order, Again Besting Airbus, Boeing and Airbus Project Future Direction of Their Industry, EADS Takes an 'Early Loss' On Airbus Delay. Conference call transcripts: Boeing Q3'06
• Potentially impacted stocks and ETFs: EADS (Paris: 005730), Boeing (BA). ETFs: iShares Dow Jones US Aerospace & Defense (ITA), PowerShares Aerospace & Defense (PPA)
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