Honeywell Profit Up 14 Percent, Boosted by Construction


Diversified manufacturer Honeywell International said Friday quarterly profit rose 14.2 percent amid continued strong demand from the aerospace and commercial construction sectors, but results were slightly below Wall Street's expectations.


Profit was up at the company's aerospace, control and specialty materials units, but dipped at its transportation operation.

Honeywell stock has been as high as $61.98 this week, its highest point since 1999.

So far this year, the shares are up about 31 percent, outpacing the 11 percent rise in the Dow Jones industrial average.

The world's largest maker of cockpit electronics reported a third-quarter profit of $618 million, or 81 cents per share, compared with $541 million, or 66 cents per share, a year earlier.

Analysts, on average, had expected a profit of 82 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates. When it reported second-quarter results, Honeywell said it expected third-quarter profit of 79 cents to 81 cents per share.

Revenue came to $8.74 billion, up 9.8 percent from $7.95 billion a year earlier.

"Both Europe and Asia continued to lead the way with very healthy growth rates," said Chairman and Chief Executive David Cote, on a conference call with analysts.

J.P. Morgan analyst Stephen Tusa wrote in a note to clients: "There doesn't look to be any potholes here, but the stock has held its strong [year-to-date] gains recently, and with a very positive consensus, inline results might not be enough to drive further upside today."

'Favorable' Economic Outlook

Honeywell said it expects to report full-year profit of $3.14 per share to $3.16 per share, at the high end of its prior forecast, and raised its revenue target by $300 million to $34.2 billion.

Analysts expect full-year profit of $3.16 a share on revenue of $33.98 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.

"Our overall view of the global economy remains favorable, remains actually quite positive," said David Anderson, chief financial officer, on a conference call with investors. "While we're planning for modest deceleration in some of the developed markets...we expect continued strength in the developing markets."

Results at Honeywell, which also makes automation systems for large commercial buildings, have also been driven by strong spending on infrastructure, particularly outside the United States.

Profit was up 12 percent at the company's aerospace unit, 13 percent at automation and control systems -- which makes thermostats and other building-management products -- and 43 percent at specialty materials, which is smaller than those operations. Transportation systems profit dipped 4 percent.

"Honeywell's numbers, I thought, bore out pretty well and carry out the theme that it is a multinational economy," said Peter Sorrentino, senior vice president and portfolio manager at Huntington Asset Advisors, a Cincinnati-based company with $6.5 billion under management, which owns Honeywell shares.

The Morris Township, New Jersey-based company has acknowledged running into delays in developing flight control software for Boeing's upcoming 787 Dreamliner.