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Shares of Boeing (NYSE:BA) are off just 2.3 percent since the beginning of 2013, which is pretty good, all things considered. The world’s leading aerospace company is in the throes of a public-relations nightmare as aviation officials around the world ground its flagship aircraft, the 787 Dreamliner, because of an issue with the lithium-ion batteries used in the plane’s advanced electronics system.
Investors have been taken on a roller coaster ride the past few weeks as expected growing pains for the aircraft turned into a full-blown review by the Federal Aviation Administration. While the lithium-ion battery, which is manufactured by GS Yuasa Corp., has been at the heart of safety concerns, a fuel leak is also under investigation.
But Boeing has more than just the Dreamliner to worry about. Contract negotiations between management and a labor union representing 23,000 engineers and technical workers appear to be falling apart, threatening the plane’s production, which has so far continued without fault…
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