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Teal Group Jet Forecast Calls For Boeing to Grab 61% of Market

By Rebecca Christie of Dow Jones Newswires

June 8, 2007 – Washington, D.C. (Dow Jones) –A new Teal Group Corp. forecast of the commercial jetliner market calls for Boeing Co. (BA) to grab a 61% market share over the next 10 years.

Airbus is projected to win just 39% of the jet transport market, measured by dollar value, over the same period, said Teal Group aircraft analyst Richard Aboulafia. Teal Group is a Washington-area consulting firm with a large number of aerospace and defense industry clients.

The new forecast predicts that Boeing's new 787 passenger jet will reach the market on time and perform as promised. It also wonders whether Airbus will be able to pour enough development resources into the A350-XWB, the company's intended 787 challenger and an important part of its business strategy.

Also, Airbus faces a major restructuring effort as it tries to recover from recent missteps. Potential pitfalls include more development delays, worker protests over planned layoffs and a market glut if Airbus tries to sell too many single-aisle jets, the Teal Group forecast said.

"Boeing's lead over Airbus is increasing," Aboulafia said in the forecast. "Aside from the huge issue of 787 execution, it's important to note that most of the potential downsides affect Airbus."

In the 2007-2016 period, Teal Group projects production of 9,411 jetliners worth $692.5 billion. This includes 6,585 single-aisle planes, worth $298.2 billion, and 2,826 twin-aisle planes, worth $394.3 billion.

This 10-year outlook projects significant growth over the 1997-2006 period, when 7,282 aircraft worth $490.9 billion were delivered.

"We expect production to rise through 2010," the Teal Group report said. "The upturn could keep going, but that would likely lead to an unpleasant downturn after 2011. Our forecast instead calls for a comfortable and temporary dip after 2011."

In a recent letter to shareholders, the European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co. (5730.FR) acknowledged the troubles of its Airbus unit and the need to improve performance. But the company expressed confidence that its stock would hold its value while Airbus regroups.

"Investors point to the huge value that resides in EADS and in Airbus for Europe; they believe neither could be left to fail," EADS said.

"Another view is that Airbus operates in a duopoly, wherein its fortunes cannot diverge for too long from those of Boeing, supported by the same economic cycle; surely, some investors say, should a reversal of news flow occur, it would support a turnaround of market sentiment," EADS said.

Copyright (c) 2007 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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