Boeing posts record jet sales and deliveries in 2014

Boeing posted year-end data Tuesday showing it busted through all previous production and sales records in 2014.

The Chicago-based airplane giant delivered 723 commercial airliners to customers. That's 75 more than last year's record high.

The increase is due largely to the ramp-up in production of the 787 Dreamliner, as well as faster production of the 737 single-aisle domestic jet.

Boeing delivered 114 Dreamliners in the year, four more than its target.

The jet maker also posted 1,432 net orders, surpassing the previous all-time sales high of 1,413 in 2007.

For four years after that high, the global financial crisis sharply reduced sales, but orders have steadily recovered since 2012.

Because of the newly launched 777X, Boeing's 2014 orders were more than usually skewed toward expensive wide-body jets.

Boeing landed 283 orders for its 777s, including 220 for the coming 777Xs.

The 737 remains a huge seller, with 1,104 net orders last year, including 891 orders for the new 737 Max models.

Airbus is due to release its 2014 year-end data next week. Until then, it's uncertain which manufacturer sold more airplanes.

It's already clear though that Boeing will beat Airbus on jet deliveries.

And because of the higher proportion of wide-body jets in Boeing's sales figures, the total value of the U.S. manufacturer's orders will also probably be higher than that of its European rival.

Gates writes for the Seattle Times/McClatchy.

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