Honeywell forecasts first-quarter results below estimates

(Reuters) -Honeywell International Inc on Thursday forecast a weak first quarter after missing on sales estimates for the last three months of 2023, due to lower demand in its businesses that offer building technologies and cater to warehouses.

Shares of the diversified industrial firm, also a major aerospace supplier, fell 2.6% to $197.01 before the bell.

The company’s safety and productivity solutions business has been hit by lower customer investment in warehouses as they look to offload existing inventory before ordering new products amid an uncertain economic outlook.

In the fourth quarter, the unit’s organic sales fell 24% year-on-year. Organic sales at the company’s building technologies business also fell 1% due to lower sales of fire and security products.

However, Honeywell’s aviation business, which counts Boeing Co and Airbus SE as customers, was a bright spot with organic sales rising 15% to $3.67 billion during the quarter.

Honeywell forecast first-quarter profit per share of $2.12 to $2.22, short of Wall Street expectations of $2.24, as per LSEG data.

Sales for the quarter through March are expected to be $8.9 billion to $9.2 billion, compared with expectations of $9.25 billion.

In the fourth quarter, the company’s sales rose 3% to $9.44 billion, compared with analysts’ estimates of $9.7 billion.

On an adjusted basis, profit was $2.60 per share, compared with expectations of $2.59.

Honeywell on Thursday also announced the election of CEO Vimal Kapur to the additional role of chairman of board, effective June 7.

(Reporting by Anandita Mehrotra in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

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