Honeywell projects increases in profit and revenue for 2015, but sales estimates disappoint

IndustriesAssociated Press

Honeywell International Inc. has pared its sales outlook for the fourth quarter and full-year, saying Monday that it expects only modest economic growth in most of the world next year.

Even so, the industrial conglomerate backed its previous guidance on earnings for the fourth quarter and 2014. Honeywell also issued earnings and sales outlooks for 2015 that represent gains versus a year earlier.

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But the sales outlooks all fell short of Wall Street's expectations, according to FactSet.

Shares in the Morris Township, New Jersey company rose modestly in afternoon trading after declining slightly earlier in the day.

Honeywell makes and develops technology and products used by the aerospace, construction and automotive industries. Because it is involved in so many industries, it is considered a good measure of how the economy is faring.

The company reaffirmed its earnings outlook for the fourth quarter, forecasting earnings per share will range from $1.37 to $1.42. It expects sales will climb to between $10.1 billion and $10.2 billion. Wall Street analysts were anticipating sales of $10.4 billion, the top end of Honeywell's previous sales estimate for the quarter.

For all of 2014, Honeywell projects earnings per share will range from $5.50 to $5.55, in line with financial analysts' earnings forecast of $5.54 per share. Full-year sales should range between $40.1 billion to $40.2 billion, the company said. That's down from a previous range of $40.3 billion to $40.4 billion, and short of financial analysts' prediction of $40.4 billion.

"While we're expecting only modest GDP growth in most regions around the world next year and will accordingly continue to be conservative in our cost and resource planning, our plan is to deliver higher organic growth, strong margin expansion, and double-digit earnings growth once again in 2015," Honeywell Chairman and CEO Dave Cote said in a statement.

For 2015, the company forecast earnings per share will range from $5.95 to $6.15, representing a roughly 8 percent to 12 percent annual increase. The outlook exceeds Wall Street's forecast for earnings of $6.11 per share.

Honeywell projects sales next year will reach between $40.5 billion and $41.1 billion. That's shy of analysts' prediction of $41.9 billion.

Shares in Honeywell added 46 cents to $96.34 in afternoon trading. The stock is up 5.3 percent this year.