Boeing job losses hit 10,000

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Plane maker Boeing announced 10,000 job losses today, hit by a fourth quarter loss and a hard-hitting strike.

The news came on top of waning demand for the company's commercial jets.

Airlines are cutting spending and air travel has declined amid the global economic slowdown.

Boeing recently said it would cut about 4,500 positions from its commercial aircraft business as a result of the worsening market conditions.

Today Boeing executives said an additional 5,500 jobs in other parts of the company, including its defence division, were to be eliminated through attrition and redundancies throughout the year.

The Chicago-based company reported a fourth-quarter loss of 56 million, dollars compared with profit of 1.03 billion dollars a year earlier.

Boeing delivered just 50 planes in the last three months of 2008, compared with 112 planes during the same period a year earlier.

Boeing's 27,000 machinists went on strike on September 6 in a dispute over new contracts, causing delays in production and deliveries. The action ended on November 2 but cost the firm billions.

In November, Boeing further delayed the first test flight and delivery of its much-anticipated 787 jetliner, the world's first large commercial aeroplane made mostly from carbon-fibre composites, blaming the strike and lingering production problems.

It also delayed deliveries of 747-8 cargo and passenger jets, partly due to the strike, and deliveries of 737s, 747s, 767s and 777s as it replaces defective fasteners used to attach wiring and other components inside the planes' fuselages.