Raytheon Profit Beats Estimates as Company Raises Outlook

Raytheon Co. (RTN) reported first-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates and raised its 2013 profit outlook while lowering sales expectations.

The world’s biggest missile maker said net income from continuing operations rose 8.9 percent to $490 million, or $1.49 a share, compared with $450 million, or $1.33 a share, a year earlier. Analysts predicted $1.28 a share, the average of 18 estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales fell 1 percent to $5.88 billion, the Waltham, Massachusetts-based company said today in a statement.

Raytheon said it expects full-year profit to be higher than forecast in January. The company said 2013 profit will be $5.26 to $5.41 a share, up from the $5.16 to $5.31 a share forecast last quarter. It expects revenue to be $23.2 billion to $23.7 billion, down from the earlier forecast of $23.6 billion to $24.1 billion.

“Strong program execution drove solid operating results in the first quarter,” William Swanson, Raytheon’s chairman and chief executive officer, said in the statement. “Our innovation and technology, along with our focus on productivity, agility and affordability, continue to create value for our customers and shareholders.”

Raytheon followed defense contracting peers such as General Dynamics Corp. (GD), Northrop Grumman Corp. (NOC) and Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT), which also said this week that automatic budget cuts that took effect March 1 won’t hurt profits this year. Raytheon is the only company in the group that cut its revenue forecast.

The reductions, known as sequestration, were crafted by President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans as a penalty for failing to agree on a deficit reduction strategy. They will strip $1.2 trillion from national security and domestic programs over nine years unless a compromise is reached.

Raytheon rose 1.3 percent to $58.13 in New York trading yesterday and is up 1 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Nick Taborek in Washington at ntaborek@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Stoughton at sstoughton@bloomberg.net

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