2013 is panning out to be a good year for United Technologies (UTX). Shares of the $82 billion firm have climbed more than 10% since the first trading day in January, outpacing even the broad market's brisk climb. UTX is an industrial conglomerate that owns a big portfolio of construction, aviation and security products. The company's brands include everything from Carrier air conditioners to Sikorsky helicopters.
If there's a single word to describe UTX's total business, it's "cyclical."Each of the key product lines that United Technologies makes is subject to some serious ebbing and flowing with the economic cycle, and as a result, when it rains economically, it pours for this company. To fix that, UTX has been working to diversify its product lineup to include more recession-resistant offerings. In the meantime, service and parts have been a saving grace for UTX's bottom line. Because the elevators and jet engines that UTX makes are big ticket items, keeping them serviced well is a good investment for the firm's customers -- and it means that UTX can lay claim to consistent, sticky revenues for its troubles. While acquiring aviation firm Goodrich added considerable debt, the firm's balance sheet is in reasonable shape. Ample cash flows help to finance a 2.36% dividend yield in shares -- and rising analyst sentiment bodes well for this stock right now.
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