Boeing downgraded because 737 Max accidents may cause 'some delay in orders'

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Edward Jones lowered its rating of Boeing shares to hold from buy on Monday, saying the company’s second deadly crash of its 737 MAX 8 aircraft in the past five months may have a tangible effect on near-term earnings.

“The accidents may result in additional expense and some delay in orders, which, from a business perspective, could pressure financial results,” Edward Jones analyst Jeff Windau said in a note to investors.

Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 crashed just after takeoff in a rural area southeast of Addis Ababa, killing all 149 passengers and eight crew members on board. The flight was operated on the same new Boeing model that went down in the Java Sea in October, which killed all 189 people on board.

“Both flights had similar patterns after takeoff, raising some concerns about the automation of the flight control system,” Windau said. “A primary downside risk to shares, in our view, is the continued concern about safety in the 737 Max 8, leading to order cancellations.”

While the Federal Aviation Administration on Monday said the Boeing 737 MAX is still airworthy, officials in China, Australia, Indonesia and Singapore ordered domestic airlines to ground their fleets of the aircraft. Several carriers in Latin America also grounded their Boeing 737 MAX aircraft. The groundings represent 40 percent of the Boeing 737 MAX airplanes in fleets around the world, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Boeing shares fell 2.1 percent in premarket trading from Monday’s close of $400.01 a share. Edward Jones has a $

– CNBC’s Leslie Josephs contributed to this report.

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