An Airbus A330neo flying past a Boeing sign at the 2019 International Paris Air Show.
© REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol
An Airbus A330neo flying past a Boeing sign at the 2019 International Paris Air Show.
In the latest sign of Boeing's nightmare year, the number of commercial jets it's delivered has plummeted in recent months, with the aviation giant now at risk of falling behind its archrival Airbus in the competition to be the world's largest planemaker.

The number of planes delivered by Boeing dropped by more than a third in the first six months of 2019 compared with the same period last year.

This leaves Boeing's status as the world's largest planemaker, a position it has held for eight years, under threat.

Boeing delivered 239 planes in the first six months of the year, according to the company's latest figures, released this week. Airbus, its European rival, delivered 389 planes over the same period.

Boeing delivered 378 planes during the same period in 2018, while Airbus delivered just 303. So while Airbus has seen a 28% increase in deliveries since last year, Boeing has witnessed a 37% fall.

Boeing's deliveries fell by 75% between the first and second quarters of the year.

Boeing 737 Max jets.
© KING 5 News/YouTube
Boeing 737 Max jets.
Just 90 of its 239 deliveries so far in 2019 took place in the second quarter of the year, as airlines became increasingly reluctant to buy from Boeing in March after the second fatal crash in five months involving one of its 737 Max 8 planes.

Boeing has come under commercial and regulatory scrutiny since the two crashes, which killed 346 people and left the 737 Max grounded around the world.

While International Airlines Group, which owns some of Europe's biggest airlines, announced a commitment to buy 200 Max jets, the company has not announced any firm orders for the 737 Max since the second crash.

Boeing faces lawsuits from shareholders, pilots, and families around the world, as well as congressional hearings and federal investigations into how the plane was made and certified to fly by the US Federal Aviation Administration.

Boeing managed to perform better than expected at June's Paris Air Show — the largest exhibition in the world for the industry and a venue where plane manufacturers announce new orders. But Airbus still came out victorious at the show, outselling Boeing and announcing a new plane.

American civil aviation and Boeing investigators searching through the debris
© Reuters
American civil aviation and Boeing investigators searching through the debris at the scene of the Ethiopian Airlines Boeing 737 Max plane crash.
Boeing's latest figures reveal a stark reversal compared with the same time last year, when it was basking in the positive reception of the brand-new 737 Max and Airbus was struggling with issues like engine shortages.

The 737 Max will remain grounded until the FAA and regulators around the world approve the plane to fly again, but newly discovered issues with the plane mean further delays to this process.

In the meantime, Boeing has slowed production of the 737 Max, to 42 a month from 52.

Airlines around the world are seeking compensation from Boeing as they cancel flights involving Max jets, and one airline has canceled its order for $6 billion worth of the planes.

Boeing is also facing issues with some of its other planes, including problems with the GE engines in its 777x planes and possible wing defects on some of its planes.