General Dynamics profit margins rise amid aerospace headwinds

Credit: REUTERS/Chris Helgren

By Mike Stone

WASHINGTON, Oct 28 (Reuters) - Defense contractor General Dynamics Corp GD.Nreported an 8.7% fall in third-quarter earnings on Wednesday, hit by lower sales at its aerospace and information technology businesses.

Profit margins rose to 11.5%, up slightly on margins in the second quarter as the company improved its workflow technique during the pandemic. Profit margins were still down one percentage point compared to the same period a year ago before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

Earnings per share fell to $287 million, or $2.90 per share, in the third quarter ended Sept 27, from $291 million, or $3.14 per share, a year earlier.

The analyst mean estimate for General Dynamics Corp was for earnings of $2.86 per share according to Refinitiv IBES data.

General Dynamics' total order backlog at the end of the third-quarter 2020 was $81.5 billion, up 21% from the year-ago quarter as the U.S. Department of Defense continues to place orders with U.S. defense contractors.

Revenue at the Reston, Virginiabased company fell 3.4% to $9.4 billion.

(Reporting by Mike Stone in Washington, D.C.; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Jane Merriman)

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