Boeing to temporarily reduce 737 MAX production

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The Boeing Co. on Friday announced that it will temporarily reduce the production rate on the 737 line from the current rate of 52 per month to 42 beginning in mid-April. 

CEO Dennis Muilenburg said in a press release that the move will accommodate the pause in deliveries of the 737 MAX as the company works on software and training upgrades following two deadly crashes of the aircraft, which forced a worldwide grounding. 

“At a production rate of 42 airplanes per month, the 737 program and related production teams will maintain their current employment levels while we continue to invest in the broader health and quality of our production system and supply chain,” Muilenburg said. "We will also work directly with our suppliers on their production plans to minimize operational disruption and financial impact of the production rate change.” 

Meanwhile, Spirit Aerosystems announced late Friday that it will maintain its 737 deliveries to Boeing at 52 per month.  "Spirit and Boeing have agreed to work together to minimize the disruption to Spirit operations and the supply chain," said Spirit Aerosystems President and CEO Tom Gentile.  "This is a challenging time for our industry, and we are working with our customer Boeing to support them as they focus on returning the MAX to service."

Spirit said it will minimize the impact to its full-time workforce by reducing contractors and overtime,  and suspend hiring to fill open positions. 

The Wichita Business Journal contributed to this report.

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