More Americans following the Boeing 737 Max news are willing to travel on the plane but view Boeing (BA) more negatively, according to an IBD/TIPP poll, amid an ongoing investigation and continued flight cancellations through the busy summer season.
The ongoing Boeing 737 Max crisis continues to hit the company's commercial aircraft deliveries. In May, total deliveries plunged to 30 from 68 a year ago. Net orders for the year to date were minus 125 as financial troubles at Jet Airways force Boeing to take its orders off the books earlier this year.
The IBD/TIPP survey, which was conducted May 30 through June 7, found that 61% of Americans are following the Boeing crisis closely vs. 69% during the prior poll, which was conducted March 28 to April 6.
Of those who are following the news closely, 48% said they would avoid flying on a 737 Max once it has reentered service, down from 51% in the prior poll.
Meanwhile 48% said they were likely to fly on the jet, up from 45% in the prior survey.
The Boeing jet has been grounded globally since March following the deadly Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10. That followed a similar 737 Max crash by Indonesia-based Lion Air on Oct. 29.
The improvement in sentiment on Boeing comes after a flurry of steps to address the problem but without regulators lifting the ban on 737 Max flights.
Boeing said last month it completed software development to fix the MCAS automated flight control system that has been implicated in the crashes.
But the company still hasn't submitted it to the Federal Aviation Administration for certification. Boeing is currently responding to FAA requests for more detail on how pilots interact with the airplane controls. When that is done, the company and FAA will schedule a certification test flight.
Separately, the FAA also has reportedly expanded its safety review to include older 737 models, as process that will likely delay certification of the 737 Max as well.
Boeing shares fell 1.3% to 349.33 on the stock market today. General Electric (GE), whose CFM International joint venture builds the 737 Max engine, was up 0.7%, and Airbus' (EADSY) U.S. shares climbed 2.4%.
Investors More Critical Of Boeing On 737 Max News
Investors have grown more critical of Boeing as the problems with the 737 Max drag on, with 49% saying they now have a less favorable view of Boeing vs. 44% in the prior survey.
Overall sentiment has gone the same direction, with 47% reporting a less favorable view, up from 42% in the last poll, and 2% having a more favorable view, down from 8%.
Despite assurances from Boeing of a fix coming soon, airlines continue to cancel 737 Max flights through the busy summer travel season.
On Sunday, American Airlines (AAL) announced it's canceling around 115 daily flights of the 737 Max through Sept. 3, three weeks later than previously announced.
Boeing had been hopeful that the FAA would approve the 737 Max for flights in July, but now CEO Dennis Muilenburg expects the jets to begin flying again by the end of the year.
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