United Tech cuts sales forecast on weak economy

Tue Oct 23, 2012 7:00am EDT

(Reuters) - United Technologies Corp (UTX.N) reported a 3.3 percent decline in third-quarter earnings and cut its sales forecast for the year, citing weak demand from airlines and an uncertain economy.

The world's largest maker of elevators and air conditioners said on Tuesday that net income came to $1.25 billion, or $1.37 per share, compared with $1.29 billion, or $1.43 per share, a year earlier.

The Hartford, Connecticut-based company said changes in exchange rates had lowered its profit by 7 cents per share.

The maker of Pratt & Whitney jet engines and Black Hawk helicopters said it expected full-year sales to come in at the low end of its prior forecast of $58 billion to $59 billion, but it held its full-year profit outlook steady at $5.25 to $5.35 per share.

Chief Executive Officer Louis Chenevert said the lower sales target reflected "the lack of recovery in the commercial aerospace aftermarket and continued uncertainty in the global economy."

Besides sales of new jet engines and other aviation equipment, United Tech generates revenue by maintaining planes that use its equipment and by selling spare parts.

Revenue rose 5.7 percent to $15 billion from $14.2 billion. Wall Street had expected $15.51 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The slowing world economy has hit sales growth across the industrial sector, with big manufacturers including General Electric Co (GE.N), Honeywell International Inc (HON.N) and Caterpillar Inc (CAT.N) also reporting revenue that came short of Wall Street's expectations in the past few days.

United Tech shares have risen about 6 percent over the past year, trailing the 16 percent gain for the Dow Jones industrial average .DJI.

(Reporting by Scott Malone; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)

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