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30 Jul 13. GKN results boosted by civil aviation market to beat expectations. Shares in GKN continued their recent upward momentum after the FTSE 100 engineer’s first-half results overshot analysts’ consensus expectations. The British company is one of the world’s biggest makers of driveline systems – equipment that controls vehicle steering – and has over the past year seen its sales fluctuate in line with volatile levels of global light vehicle production. However, GKN on Tuesday attributed its renewed focus on the booming civil aviation market for a 5 per cent year-on-year jump in interim adjusted pre-tax profit to £278m, beating City forecasts of £271m. “For the first time in GKN’s history, our aerospace division was the largest profit contributor of our four divisions,” said Nigel Stein, GKN chief executive. “This was boosted by our recent acquisition of engine systems – the renamed Volvo Aero – GKN aerospace trading profits increased 37 per cent in the half.” GKN’s aerospace unit produces wing and body components for commercial airline makers such as Boeing and Airbus, and its parts can be found in such jets as the Dreamliner 787. However, Mr Stein refused to comment on recent speculation that GKN was poised to buy Spirit Aerosystems of the US for $35 a share, valuing the former Boeing subsidiary at $6bn. “There is nothing more that we can say on that at the moment,” he said. The group’s focus on the booming civil aviation sector offset declining sales of military aircraft, and the sluggish European car market. GKN earlier this year initiated a £25m restructuring – including the axing of 200 jobs in Germany and Japan – in response to European car sales falling to a 17-year low in 2012. In the six months to June 30, GKN’s driveline division saw its sales rise 4 per cent to £1.7bn, as global light vehicle production during the half edged up 1.4 per cent. Overall, GKN reported sales up 12 per cent to £3.6bn, while pre-tax profit more than halved from £279m to £134m, although this was distorted by a £91m foreign exchange hedging loss. Diluted earnings per share fell from 13.7p to 5.7p, and the interim dividend was boosted 8 per cent to 2.6p. (Source: FT.com)

31 Jul 13. Finmeccanica (SIFI.MI) reaffirmed on Wednesday its 2013 targets after posting a second-quarter net loss of 69m euros ($92m) due to a provision on a Belgium train order and higher costs to restructure its defence electronics unit Selex ES. In a statement the debt-laden Italian aerospace and defence contractor confirmed 2013 targets for revenues of 16.7-17bn euros, EBITA of around 1.1bn euros and free operating cash flow of around 100 million euros. In the second quarter of 2012 the company booked a net profit of 42m euros. Free operating cash flow was positive for 40m euros in the quarter, compared to a negative result of 70m euros a year earlier, while net debt rose to 4.929 billion euros. Orders dropped to 3.2bn euros in the quarter. Finmeccanica also said restructuring was progressing well at its aeronautics and defence electronic units but not at its loss-making AnsaldoBreda train subsidiary, which was hit by extra costs on some projects. ($1 = 0.7531 euros) (Source: Reuters)

02 Aug 13. Eaton Corporation plc (ETN) announced record sales and operating earnings, driven by the acquisition of Cooper Industries. Sales in the second quarter were $5.6bn, 38 percent above the same period in 2012. Operating earnings for the second quarter of 2013, excluding charges of $39m to integrate recent acquisitions, were $519m, an increase of 32 percent over 2012. Operating earnings per share, which exclude charges of $0.05 per share to integrate recent acquisitions, were $1.09 for the second quarter of 2013. This result is a decrease of 5 percent from the second quarter of 2012, reflecting the shares issued as part of the acquisition of Cooper Industries and the purchase price accounting charges resulting from the transaction. Sales for the Electrical Products segment

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