Boeing (BA) - Get Boeing Company Report shares moved lower Thursday following reports the planemaker is contending with a new defect on its 787 Dreamliner, the latest in a series of production problems that have delayed aircraft deliveries.
The latest problem involves certain titanium parts that are weaker than they should be on 787s built over the past three years, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter said. The discovery is among other Dreamliner issues that have left Boeing stuck with more than $25 billion of the jets in its inventory, the Journal said.
Boeing said in a statement that it had received a notice from one of its suppliers about certain 787 parts that were improperly manufactured.
"While our investigation is ongoing, we have determined that this does not present an immediate safety of flight concern for the active in-service fleet," the company said. "Yet-to-deliver airplanes will be reworked as necessary prior to customer delivery. Any potential fleet actions will be determined through our normal review process and confirmed with the FAA."
Boeing shares were marked 1.44% lower in pre-market trading Thursday to change hands at $218.57 each, a move that would extend the stock's six-month gain to around 13.4%.
Boeing and regulators have determined that the new titanium issue doesn’t pose an urgent safety risk to planes currently flying.
Boeing has been working to resolve problems with the 787 Dreamliner since late 2020 after discovering tiny gaps between sections of the aircraft that could lead to premature fatigue.
The Federal Aviation Administration is investigating Boeing’s quality controls and examining a series of alleged quality-control lapses across Boeing’s commercial-airplane unit, according to an Aug. 18 agency letter the Wall Street Journal said.
The FAA has claimed that Boeing allowed unqualified personnel to sign off on quality checks or otherwise failed to follow company or FAA guidelines.
Boeing has disputed some of the FAA’s claims and told the agency that an enforcement action wasn’t warranted, as the company works on improving, according to a Sept. 2 letter viewed by The Journal.
Earlier this week, Boeing shares slipped after the planemaker delivered fewer than expected jets in the third quarter. The company didn’t deliver any 787 jets during the latest quarter.
The FAA said in July that some undelivered Boeing 787 Dreamliners had a structural flaw that the company needed to repair before delivering to customers.
The agency said Boeing needed to fix gaps in the forward pressure bulkhead on certain undelivered 787 Dreamliners, which was discovered as part of an ongoing system-wide inspection of Boeing's 787 shimming process.
In addition, the company has also to contend with two 737 MAX crashes in late 2018 and early 2019.