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L3 raises FY'18 guidance as Q3 adjusted EPS tops estimates

L3 Technologies Inc. raised its full-year earnings guidance as it reported better-than-expected preliminary net income in the third quarter.

Net income from continuing operations jumped to $202 million, or $2.54 per share, in the three months to Sept. 28, from $143 million, or $1.79 per share, in the three months to Sept. 29, 2017, according to preliminary results.

Adjusted EPS came in at $2.85 in the third quarter, compared with $1.79 a year ago. The third-quarter S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus estimate for normalized EPS was $2.39.

Net sales jumped 10% year over year to $2.52 billion from $2.29 billion. Operating income climbed 17% to $272 million from $232 million.

For full year 2018, the defense contractor projects adjusted EPS from continuing operations of between $10.20 and $10.30, compared with a prior guidance of between $9.80 and $10.00. Net sales are estimated to reach $10.0 billion to $10.20 billion, unchanged from the previous guidance.

The results came alongside an Oct. 14 announcement on the planned all-stock mega-merger between L3 and Harris Corp., creating the sixth-largest defense company in the U.S. and the 10th-largest in the world.

The combined entity, L3 Harris Technologies, is expected to generate approximately $16 billion in net revenue and $1.9 billion of free cash flow during calendar year 2018.