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Honeywell Tops Earnings Forecasts, Boosts 2021 Profit Guidance

CEO Darius Adamczyk said Honeywell is seeing 'promising signs of a rapid recovery in some of our markets' following a stronger-than-expected first quarter.

Honeywell International  (HON) - Get Honeywell International Inc. Report posted stronger-than-expected first quarter earnings Friday, while boosting its full-year profit guidance, thanks in part to a surge in safety and productivity sales.

Honeywell said adjusted earnings for the three months ending in March were pegged at $1.92, down 13.1% from the same period last year but 12 cents ahead of the Street consensus forecast. Group revenues, Honeywell said, edged 0.5% higher to $8.5 billion, again topping analysts' estimates of an $8.1 billion tally.

Looking into the current financial year, Honeywell said it sees revenues of between $34 billion and $34.8 billion, organic sales growth of between 3% and 5% and adjusted earnings in the region of $7.75 to $8.00 per share, a 15 cents per share increase from the lower end of its prior guidance. 

"Honeywell delivered a strong start to 2021 with first-quarter results that exceeded our expectations. We are seeing promising signs of a rapid recovery in some of our markets, and we are poised to capitalize on new business opportunities as they arise," said CEO Darius Adamczyk.

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"As we look to the rest of 2021 and beyond, we are well positioned for the recovery to come. Our new offerings in growing markets like life sciences are gaining traction and the industries that were hardest hit by the pandemic are expected to improve throughout the year," he added. "We have a robust portfolio of technologies that help our customers meet their environmental and social goals."  

Honeywell shares were marked 1.5% lower in pre-market trading immediately following the earnings release to indicate an opening bell price of $225.90 each, a move that would trim the stock's six-month gain to around 28.7%.

Aerospace sales slumped 22% to $2.63 billion, Honeywell said, due to lower commercial aircraft demand amid ongoing travel restrictions linked to the coronavirus pandemic and the broader impact of the delayed return to service of Boeing Co.'s  (BA) - Get Boeing Company Report 737 MAX. 

Safety and productivity solutions sales, however, rose 48% to $2.1 billion thanks to gains from its warehouse automation unit, which includes major clients such as Amazon  (AMZN) - Get, Inc. Report.