Security sales help Honeywell profits climb

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

MORRISTOWN, N.J.—Honeywell International reported a stronger quarterly profit as it cut costs and sold more security systems for buildings and turbochargers for cars and trucks, nudging its shares to a lifetime high, according to a recent Thomson Reuters report.
The 13 percent increase in profit, helped by higher margins and a lower tax bill, beat analysts' expectations and the company raised the lower end of its full-year profit forecast, the July 19 report said.
Honeywell, which also supplies the U.S. military, has attempted to reduce costs and improve productivity to counter the impact of a weak European market and sequestration-related budget cuts by the U.S. government.
On July 19, Honeywell reported second-quarter earnings of $1.28 per share, topping the average analyst estimate by 7 cents, according to Reuters.
The company also raised the low end of its current-year pro-forma earnings-per-share forecast to $4.85 from $4.80, the report said. The top end was unchanged at $4.95.
According to Reuters, analysts said Honeywell's second-quarter earnings beat was driven by a lower tax rate, which added 6 cents to earnings. The effective tax rate for the quarter fell to 23.1 percent from 26.0 percent a year earlier, the report said.
Pension and post-retirement benefit payments fell to $42 million during the second quarter from $308 million a year earlier, while the company's operating income margin rose to 14.3 percent from 13.6 percent, according to the report.
On July 19, Honeywell shares edged up 0.5 percent to $83.38 on the New York Stock Exchange, having earlier touched an all-time high of $84.80, the report said. Early in the afternoon today, Honeywell stock was trading at $83.24. The company's stock has risen more than 40 percent in the last 12 months, Reuters said.