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Airbus Wins 705 Net Orders January-July

Airbus overtook Boeing in unadjusted aircraft orders for 2014 after last month's Farnborough Airshow, but continued to lag its US rival when taking into account cancellations, company data showed on Monday.

Airbus won 980 aircraft orders between January and July, with 705 net orders, beating its newly introduced net order target for the year.

Airbus has said its haul of orders at Farnborough marked its best ever performance at the UK's biennial aerospace event.

Boeing, whose officials argue net orders are the most sensible benchmark for the fiercely contested order race between the world's largest plane makers, reported 837 gross orders and 783 net sales after cancellations between January 1 and July 29.

On July 31, Boeing added an order for 40 wide-body jets from Japan's All Nippon Airways. Airbus has added 8 wide-body orders to Iberia parent IAG since its latest monthly order sheet was compiled.

In an effort to reassure investors following a rise in the number of cancellations and amid growing industry concerns over a cyclical downturn, Airbus said last week that these included conversions between models and showed no underlying weakness.

It told analysts that some cancelled current-generation A320s would be replaced by orders for the A320neo model, due to make its first flight in September.

In its latest monthly order table, Airbus set out in more detail the way its order book has been evolving.

It reported 44 new cancellations of its A320 model in July.

Of these, 39 represented conversions between the two different models of A320, including 23 for AirAsia and 16 for Latam Airlines.

However, a comparison of monthly data suggested that Latam had converted 12 aircraft and cancelled 4.

Airbus declined further comment, saying it did not discuss decisions by its customers.

Airbus confirmed the cancellation of six A380 superjumbo aircraft for Japanese airline Skymark Airlines.

The latest totals exclude 127 provisional orders for the newest version of its wide-body A330 jet, the A330neo, which was launched at Farnborough. Firm contracts are expected to be negotiated in the coming weeks and months.

The latest tally included 40 out of 43 aircraft announced as additional orders for BOC Aviation at the air show. Of these, three had already been placed in the order book in May.

On top of orders announced at the air show, Airbus reported a sale of 45 A320-family aircraft to at least one undisclosed customer.

The data also showed that Australia's Qantas had cancelled five A320s.

Industry sources have said that approximately that number of aircraft, assigned to Qantas unit Jetstar, have been sitting in Toulouse for some time awaiting delivery as the airline struggles to get regulatory approval for a Hong Kong venture.

Airbus declined comment.

Airbus switched to a net order target for the year with its first-half results published last week, saying net orders should exceed deliveries and that these should be around the same as the 626 deliveries seen in 2013.

Airbus said it had delivered 352 planes between January and July, including 16 A380s.

In the latest period for which Boeing delivery figures are available, the US plane maker handed over 342 aircraft between January and June. Boeing targets 715-725 deliveries in 2014.

(Reuters)