General Dynamics ( GD ) on Wednesday raised earnings guidance as first-quarter profit rose almost 22% from a year ago and crushed analysts' forecasts. The company had net income of $269 million, or $1.34 a share, vs. $221 million, or $1.11 a share, a year ago, well above the consensus forecast of $1.19 a share, according to Thomson First Call. Revenue jumped 39% to $4.76 billion. The company's marine and combat units both posted revenue gains of more than 30%. Sales at its information systems and technology unit surged 72.5%, to $1. 72 billion. Aerospace sales rose just 2%. Because of the strong first quarter, the company said it was raising EPS guidance for 2004 to $5.70 to $5.75, also higher than the consensus forecast of $5.59 a share. Shares rose $1.78, or 2%, to $92.78.