ENGINES OUTPERFORM LEASING AT GE
Engine maker GE Aviation reported a slight dip in nine-month revenue, to just below $14 million for the period to the end of September, but profits were up 18% to $2.87 billion. At sister company GECAS, the world's largest civil aircraft lessor by fleet size, profits fell 22% to $746 million for the nine-month period, including a 33% drop in the third quarter. GECAS's total assets were up 1% to $50 billion, but its aircraft leasing assets have yet to be disclosed.
ECA CNAI WINS A350 TOOLING CONTRACT
Aeronautics industrial engineering company ECA CNAi has secured a contract for the supply of Airbus A350 XWB production tools for the aircraft's keel beam, a composite structure designed to strengthen the central fuselage. The company, based in Toulouse, is a subsidiary of civil and defence supplier ECA.
VOLUMES TO STAY UNDER PRESSURE: EATON
Eaton, the Cleveland-based manufacturer, saw aerospace segment operating profits fall 23% to $61 million as revenue declined 16% to $394 million. Chief executive Alexander Cutler estimates aerospace markets were down 14% for the quarter - 11% in the USA and 19% elsewhere. "We anticipate that volumes are likely to remain under pressure in the fourth quarter," he says.
BOEING DEBT OUTLOOK TURNS NEGATIVE: MOODY'S
Moody's has affirmed its A2 long-term and P-1 short-term debt ratings for Boeing and its Boeing Capital aircraft leasing subsidiary, but changed the rating outlook to negative from stable owing to "negative developments" that have weakened Boeing's financial flexibility. The rating agency notes that airlines and leasing companies continue to be strained so production cuts could follow. Moody's estimates that a 20% cut in production could lower operating profits by around $1 billion a year.
SPAIN APPROVES LOAN TO XWB SUPPLIERS
The Spanish government has approved a €359 million ($535 million) loan in the period 2010-14 to Spanish companies involved in the Airbus A350 XWB programme. Spain's workshare on the programme is 11%. Companies will be able to apply for up to 40% of their experimental development costs and up to 60% of their industrial research costs. Repayment terms, according to the government, will "depend on the outcome of the [A350] project".
AEROMECHANICAL TO ACQUIRE WINGSPEED
A US bankruptcy court has approved a bid by AeroMechancial Services to acquire the assets of Wingspeed for $250,000. Concord, Massachusetts-based Wingspeed, which developed and marketed Iridium and Internet voice, data and aircraft messaging services, was placed into Chapter 7 liquidation in August.
REVENUE STILL ON THE WAY DOWN FOR US CARRIERS
US airlines in September continued to see significant revenue declines as their pricing power remains weak, according to an Air Transport Association of America survey. ATA estimates a 19% year-on-year drop in passenger revenues for September, the eleventh consecutive month that passenger revenues declined from the previous year, and the tenth consecutive month of ticket price declines. ATA's latest cargo indicators show a 12% decline in cargo revenue tonnekilometres in August, the thirteenth consecutive month of falling volumes.
Source: Flight International