BAE Systems says U.S. business close to 'bottoming out' in 2014

LONDON Thu Feb 20, 2014 5:25am EST

A BAE Systems sign is seen at the naval dockyards in Portsmouth, southern England November 6, 2013. REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

A BAE Systems sign is seen at the naval dockyards in Portsmouth, southern England November 6, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Stefan Wermuth

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LONDON (Reuters) - Europe's largest defense contractor BAE Systems (BAES.L) said its U.S. business was close to "bottoming out" in 2014 after suffering a 865 million pound ($1.45 billion) writedown last year and further pressure from reduced U.S. spending.

"For 2014, the question is are we bottoming out in the US - we're getting pretty close," Group Finance Director Peter Lynas told analysts on Thursday, declining to comment on the 2015 forecast.

"I think we've taken most of the pain in 2013," he said.

BAE said on Thursday it expected continued pressure on US defense spending to hit earnings by up to 10 percent this year.

(Reporting by Brenda Goh; Editing by Neil Maidment)

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