Boeing shares climb as do 787 glitches


Boeing shares soared yesterday after company officials expressed “extreme confidence” in the embattled 787 Dreamliner, which hit turbulence after a third technical glitch in as many days.

The company climbed 3.5 percent to close at $76.76.

Mike Sinnett, Boeing’s vice president and chief project engineer for the 787 program, said he was “100 percent convinced the airplane is safe to fly,” even after Japan’s All Nippon Airways cancelled a domestic flight because a 787 Dreamliner’s on-board computer falsely showed problems with the airplane’s brake.

On Monday, a battery fire in the avionics compartment of a Tokyo-bound Japan Airlines 787 Dreamliner grounded the plane before takeoff at Logan International Airport, prompting a National Transportation Safety Board investigation. On Tuesday, another Japan Airlines 787 Dreamliner’s departure was delayed four hours at Logan because of a fuel leak.

While Boeing officials did not specifically cite Monday’s incident at Logan, Sinnett said yesterday that on-board lithium ion batteries have several layers of protection to keep them from overheating.

Richard Aboulafia, an analyst with Teal Group, said Boeing’s image will take “a harder blow” if the glitches stem from manufacturing issues.

“Clearly, if it was easy to solve, they would have solved it a long time ago,” he said. “There appear to be other systemic issues with technologies or with manufacturing processes. Either one is going to take work. It may be a long and, at times, ugly slog, but they will get there.”