Big Quarter at United Tech

Revenue blows past targets.
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United Technologies beat first-quarter estimates and reaffirmed for 2007.

The Hartford, Conn., helicopters and elevators conglomerate made $819 million, or 82 cents a share, for the quarter ended March 31, up from the year-ago $768 million, or 76 cents a share. Revenue rose to $12.28 billion from $10.62 billion a year ago.

The latest quarter was hit by a 7-cent charge tied to a European Union fine of the Otis Elevator unit. Excluding those costs, earnings were 89 cents a share in the latest quarter.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for an 80-cent profit on sales of $11.48 billion.

"Although we regret the first quarter Otis European Commission matter, we have had an excellent start to 2007," said CEO George David. "Commercial aerospace markets remain strong and Sikorsky's shipments have stepped up from last year's lower rates. Apart from the well reported North American housing market, commercial and residential construction demand worldwide remains strong. Otis' first quarter orders for new elevators were up 27% from a year ago and have compounded at 14% annually over the last three years. Comparably, Carrier's commercial air conditioning revenues were up 13% in the quarter and 12% annually over the three years."

The company said it expects to make $4.05 to $4.20 a share for the year, in line with the $4.17 Thomson target.