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General Dynamics profit drops on jet charges

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General Dynamics reported Wednesday that its profit dropped 17.3 percent in the fourth quarter because of charges at its jets unit.

Quarterly net income was $603 million, or $1.68 per diluted share, compared with $729 million, or $1.91 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Charges at the Falls Church-based defense contractor’s Switzerland-based Jet Aviation unit totaled $189 million, including a $111 million non-cash impairment charge and $78 million in contract losses.
Jet Aviation faced lower “business jet volume and delays in several narrow-body and wide-body aircraft which are nearing delivery,” Jay L. Johnson, chairman and CEO of General Dynamics, said in a statement.

Revenue during the quarter was up 6.3 percent to $9.1 billion, compared with $8.6 billion during the same period a year ago.

For the year, revenue was up 0.6 percent to $32.7 billion, compared with $32.5 billion in 2010. Full-year profit was down 3.7 percent to $2.5 billion, compared with $2.6 billion in 2010.
The company is seeking to expand beyond defense programs as the Pentagon plans major cuts over the next 10 years. Last year, the company purchased health IT company Vangent Inc.


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