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Sunday July 12th, 2020 5:41AM

Airbus' improved earnings clouded by plane troubles

By The Associated Press

PARIS (AP) — European plane maker Airbus said Thursday that its earnings improved last year but it was hindered by further problems, both to its long-troubled military aircraft program as well as more recent engine issues on its single-aisle models.

The company said that it surged to a profit of 1 billion euros ($1.25 billion) in the fourth quarter, from a loss of 816 million euros a year earlier, while revenue was stable around 23.8 billion euros. For the full year, net income almost tripled to 2.9 billion euros.

Airbus, which is based in Toulouse, France, took another charge of 1.3 billion euros on its A400 military plane, which has had cost overruns for years. And it acknowledged more struggles with engines supplied by Pratt & Whitney for the A320neo plane. The supplier had had problems with the engines last year, which it fixed, but reported a new issue more recently that could affect 2018 deliveries, Airbus said.

Another of Airbus' troubled plane models, the A380 superjumbo jet, now has a more stable outlook after the company reached a deal with Emirates airline that will cover the cost of production for years.

The various problems with these production programs have overshadowed what was otherwise a strong year for Airbus in terms of earnings, as global demand for commercial aircraft grows. Airbus raised its dividend by 11 percent and said it expects one of its key earnings metrics — earnings before interest and tax — to rise 20 percent in 2018.

CEO Tom Enders credited "very good operational performance, especially in the last quarter."

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News
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