Boeing, scrambling to integrate McDonnell Douglas while coping with serious production problems, posted its first annual loss in 50 years Tuesday.
A fourth-quarter loss of $498 million, or 51 cents a share, pushed Boeing’s loss for 1997 to $178 million, or 18 cents a share. Boeing earned $444 million, or 46 cents a share, in the fourth quarter of 1996 and $1.8 billion, or $1.85 a share, for the full year.
The last time Boeing reported an annual loss was in 1947, when it lost $448,400.
Boeing’s fourth-quarter results represented its second-straight quarterly loss. Boeing lost $696 million, or 72 cents a share, in the 1997 third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Boeing took a pretax charge of $1.4 billion to cover the cost of phasing out McDonnell Douglas commercial-jet production lines in California. Boeing also gained $99 million in pretax income from an investment intended to give employees stock incentives under its ShareValue Trust program.