Boeing Co. (BA) shares rose after analysts suggested the recent selloff due to trade tensions was overblown.
Bernstein analyst Douglas Harned said as far as tariffs go, the Chicago-based aerospace and defense company is "relatively insulated compared to other industrials, given its large and diverse backlog." Harned maintained his Overweight rating and $422 price target on Boeing.
Shares of Boeing rose 1.3% to $338.98 at 11:30 a.m. New York time.
Investors have been closely watching the tit-for-tat trade dispute between the U.S., its allies and China. Since June 18, when President Donald Trump further escalated his trade dispute with China by threatening to impose tariffs on another $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, Boeing stock has declined by 6.4%.
The Bernstein analyst believes that China will not target aircraft in retaliatory tariffs because it is building up its aerospace industry.
"China needs airplanes, and Boeing and Airbus (EADSY) are both effectively sold out on most products over the next three to four years," Harned wrote in a research note. "So, China has no other option than to buy from both Boeing and Airbus."
While China may make a symbolic action, such as a large order with Airbus, the damage shouldn't be lasting.
"Such an order could lead investors to think that China is going to shift its purchases toward Airbus," Harned explained. "But, we have seen such symbolic moves on multiple occasions against both the U.S. and the EU."
In fact, China's Premier, Li Keqiang, said Monday his government is prepared to continue talks with France linked to the purchase of Airbus aircraft.
Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg last month told TheStreet's Brian Sozzi that he is optimistic the U.S. and China will work together to sort out fair trade terms.
"China is an important relationship for us. So, we look at the aerospace market for commercial airplanes and the next 20 years, the world will need 41,000 new airplanes and more than 7,000 of them will be in China. We are doing well in China, and our Chinese customers are very important to us," explained Muilenburg, who added that the relationship between the two countries also helps create U.S. jobs.
While most investors have been focusing on Boeing's commercial business, don't snooze on its defense business, said Citi analyst Jonathan Raviv. Boeing's defense business, which comprises about 30% of EBIT, is "solid" and upcoming award activity could shine some of the spotlight back on the business, Raviv said. Citi rates Boeing at Buy with a $415 price target.
Muilenburg told TheStreet that he has seen a "re-strengthening of the defense business" and thinks the fiscal year 2018 and 2019 defense budgets from the Trump administration are "very encouraging." Boeing makes military aircraft including the Super Hornet fighter jet.
There are 21 Buy and 10 Hold ratings on Boeing stock, according to Bloomberg data.