CHICAGO - Boeing (BA) raised its long-term forecast for new airplane demand by more than 4 percent, and it's smaller aircraft and orders from the Asia-Pacific region that are driving growth.
The Chicago company said Thursday that it expects deliveries of 36,770 new airplanes over the next 20 years, with total list prices valued at an estimated $5.2 trillion.
Low-cost carriers are fueling the fastest growing segment of the market, single-aisle airplanes. Those aircraft make up 70 percent of all orders, with the heart of that demand found in the 160-seat range.
"There's no question the market is converging to this size, where network flexibility and cost efficiency meet," said Randy Tinseth, Boeing's commercial airplanes marketing vice president.
Small, widebody planes in the 200- to 300-seat range are leading demand in the twin-aisle segment of the market, the company said. Boeing forecasts 4,520 deliveries for those planes over the next 20 years, compared to 620 for widebody jets with 400 seats or more.
Boeing Co. said in its annual current market outlook that about 37 percent of the airplane deliveries, or 13,460, will be made in the Asia-Pacific market, with North America and Europe the next two most common destinations.
Tinseth described the market for airplanes as "strong and resilient."
Boeing updated its forecast ahead of next week's opening of the Farnborough Airshow near London, one of the aviation industry's prestige events.
Shares of Boeing Co. hit an all-time high this year, but have fallen almost 8 percent this month. The stock edged lower before the opening bell Thursday.