While Sikorsky Aircraft’s parent company, United Technologies (UTC), reported improvement in its second-quarter earnings compared with last year, the helicopter manufacturer itself experienced a decrease of 3 percent in sales, a 24-percent decrease in operating profit and a drop in return on sales of 2.8 basis points. In a webcast today, Greg Hays, CFO of UTC, attributed the decreases partly to weak military aftermarket sales, which he said were down 25 percent, and the fact that sequestration is making it harder to process orders for spares.
Demand for charter flights appears to be continuing its upward trend this month, but the prognosis for charter hourly rates is less encouraging on the whole. Online charter portal Avinode says its March 1 demand index is 141.15–23 points higher than last month and 30 points above a year ago.
Prospects for the executive and private charter market appear to be climbing as the traditionally busy summer season approaches, boosted this year by demand resulting from planned travel to the World Cup soccer tournament, which kicks off in South Africa on June 11.
Despite a second-quarter charge of approximately 22 cents per share for delays on its airborne early warning & control (AEW&C) program, Boeing expects per-share earnings of $5.70 to $5.85 in 2008. The company also continues to expect strong double-digit earnings growth in 2009 with earnings per share unchanged at $6.80 to $7.