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Honeywell Profit Rises 18%, Hikes Forecast

Honeywell International reported Friday that quarterly profit jumped 18 percent, topping expectations, and raised its full-year earnings forecast, citing strong demand for aircraft electronics and environment and security control systems used in large commercial buildings.

The world's biggest maker of cockpit electronics said second-quarter profit rose to $723 million, or 96 cents per diluted share, from $611 million, or 78 cents per diluted share, a year earlier.

Honeywell
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Honeywell

Analysts, on average, expected profit of 94 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.

Like other major manufacturers, Honeywell has been hard-hit this year by surging energy and metals costs.

The company has aimed to offset the higher costs by raising prices and looking for other places to reduce expenses.

Revenue came to $9.67 billion, up 13.3 percent from $8.54 billion a year earlier.

Almost three-quarters of the growth came from outside the United States, with 3 percentage points the result of exchange-rate fluctuations.

Following the pattern of other major U.S. manufacturers this week, Honeywell raised its full-year profit target by 5 cents to a range of $3.75 to $3.85 per share.

Wall Street looks for $3.79 per share.

"We are well positioned to execute and deliver results in a tougher economic environment," Dave Cote, chairman and chief executive, told investors on a conference call.

Honeywell shares rose nearly 4 percent to $52.80 in premarket trading from the close of $50.86 on the New York Stock Exchange.

Fellow diversified industrials United Technologies, Danaher and Illinois Tool Works all raised their full-year profit targets on Thursday.

Honeywell's competitors include United Tech in aerospace and building control systems, Goodrich in aviation, and DuPont in specialty materials.

The company said it expects a third-quarter gain from the sale of its aerospace fasteners unit to B/E Aerospace Inc for $1.05 billion in cash and stock.

But that gain, not factored into the raised profit forecast, could be offset by restructuring costs.

Morris Township, New Jersey-based Honeywell has benefited from continued strength in the aviation and commercial construction sectors, particularly in Asia and the Middle East, which have offset weakness in the U.S. economy.

As of Thursday's close, Honeywell shares were down about 17 percent so far this year, roughly in line with the 18 percent slide of the Standard & Poor's capital-goods industry index .

In February, publisher Dow Jones dropped Honeywell from its benchmark industrial average, the oldest and most widely watched barometer of U.S. stock activity.

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