After a remarkable 12-year boom, world aircraft industry output growth sputtered to a halt in 2016. The market fell 1.2% (in constant dollars) relative to 2015, the first aggregate decline since 2003. While military demand remains robust, most civil segments are feeling the impact of negative macroeconomic and geopolitical developments.
The previous year, 2015, was also a lackluster year, with just 1.3% growth relative to 2014. The industry had been expanding at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.5% in 2003-14. Those good times have come to a halt.
There are few signs of impending improvement this year. The summer of 2016 was an inflection point for the jetliner industry, which by a wide margin is the largest aircraft segment by value—about 60% of total world aircraft output—and the industry’s most important growth engine. Deferrals have increased, and plans for higher production rates are being reconsidered.