L-3 3Q Net Down 4.4% Following Gain As Sales Dip; 2011 View Weak

Date : 10/28/2010 @ 8:40AM
Source : Dow Jones News
Stock : L3 Technologies, Inc. (LLL)
Quote : 176.62  -1.1 (-0.62%) @ 3:59PM

L-3 3Q Net Down 4.4% Following Gain As Sales Dip; 2011 View Weak

L3 Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:LLL)
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L-3 Communications Holdings Inc.'s (LLL) third-quarter profit dropped 4.4% following a year-earlier gain as sales dipped but margins rose.

The company cut its sales forecast for the year to $15.6 billion to $15.7 billion from $16 billion to $16.1 billion but affirmed its earnings view as it sees higher margins than before.

For 2011, it predicted earnings of $8.20 to $8.40 on sales of $15.7 billion to $15.9 billion. Analysts most recently expected $8.83 a share and $16.43 billion, respectively.

The contractor of services such as training militaries and upgrading government aircraft differs from larger rivals who rely on a few major contracts for a bulk of sales. Its bottom line has held up in recent quarters, as defense companies prepare for slowing spending by customers such as the U.S. military.

L-3 posted a profit of $238 million, or $2.07 a share, down from $250 million, or $2.12 a share, a year earlier. The latest quarter included a 3-cent debt retirement charge while the year-earlier result saw a 22-cent tax-related benefit. Sales dipped 0.2% to $3.84 billion.

In July, the company forecast earnings of $2 a share on $4 billion in sales, falling short of analysts' then-estimates.

Operating margin widened to 11.4% from 10.9%.

Funded orders rose 4% from a year earlier to $3.5 billion as funded backlog ended the period at $10.8 billion, down from $10.9 billion at the beginning of the year.

The electronic systems segment, typically L-3's largest by sales, fell 2.6% on that basis as operating income jumped 20% on higher margins.

Shares closed Wednesday at $71.13 and were inactive premarket. The stock has dropped 18% this year.

-By Matt Jarzemsky, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2240; matthew.jarzemsky@dowjones.com

 
 

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