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United Airlines Buys 25 New Boeing 737 MAX Jets

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United Airlines Holdings Inc. said it is buying 25 new Boeing 737 MAX jets and bumping up its orders for dozens more as it positions its fleet for a travel rebound.

The deal is a boost for Boeing Co., which has lost hundreds of MAX orders amid a nearly two-year grounding following two fatal crashes of the jet. The U.S. in November approved the MAX for passenger flights again, laying out requirements including that the plane undergo software updates and that pilots go through additional training.

Andrew Nocella, United’s chief commercial officer, said in a memo Monday that the MAX will be key to the company’s long-term growth and its ability to serve demand, which it expects to rebound in the coming years, as it starts to replace aging aircraft that are nearing retirement. United began flying passengers on the MAX again in February.

United didn’t disclose financial terms of the deal. The MAX sells for $122 million to $135 million at list prices depending on the model, though airlines typically receive discounts for large orders.

Mr. Nocella said United is still lobbying for a third round of federal aid to avert job losses at the end of March, but needs to place aircraft orders over a year in advance of taking delivery. The 25 newly ordered planes are slated for delivery in 2023.


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