CHICAGO (AP) -- Boeing reports second-quarter results Wednesday, and once again investors will want an update on an investigation of a fire on a 787.
To be sure, the latest 787 issue appears to be far less serious than the smoldering batteries in January that led to a worldwide grounding of 787s for almost four months. The latest incident — a fire on a parked 787 at London Heathrow — appears to involve an emergency transmitter made by Honeywell, investigators have said. That transmitter is not an integral part of the 787 like the lithium-ion batteries involved in the grounding.
Late Friday the Federal Aviation Administration advised 787 operators to inspect the emergency transmitters. The FAA said it expects to issue an order making the inspections mandatory for U.S. airlines in the coming days.
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: An update from Boeing about whether the latest setback is hurting 787 orders or deliveries. Boeing is aiming to deliver at least 60 of the 787s this year, and it retained that target even after the planes were ground from mid-January until late April.
WHY IT MATTERS: Boeing collects much of the purchase price for each plane at the time of delivery, so handing the planes over to customers is important for Boeing's revenue.
"The plane's relatively high profile, innovative solutions, and value to Boeing and the civil supply chain have made investors and others keenly aware of any gremlins that have disrupted the plane's operations," Jefferies analyst Howard Rubel wrote on Thursday. He wrote that he's not about to minimize the latest event with the 787, but noted that airlines continue to fly the planes.
WHAT'S EXPECTED: Analysts surveyed by FactSet are expecting earnings of $1.57 per share, not counting expenses for pensions. Boeing's revenue is expected to be $20.79 billion. Boeing is also expected to update its full-year earnings guidance on the earnings conference call. Analysts are expecting $6.50 per share.
LAST YEAR'S QUARTER: Boeing Co. reported net income of $967 million, up from $941 million a year earlier. Revenue jumped 21 percent to $20 billion.