UPDATE 3-United Tech elevator, jet-engine orders slow, shares drop

Tue Jul 22, 2014 1:00pm EDT
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(Rewrites to account for share price drop, adds further comment)

By Lewis Krauskopf

July 22 (Reuters) - United Technologies Corp posted tepid quarterly orders for its Otis elevators and Pratt & Whitney jet engines businesses, and shares of the diversified U.S. manufacturer fell nearly 2 percent on Tuesday.

The company also cut its cash flow forecast for the year, while analysts said higher-than-expected second-quarter profit was muddied by uncertainty over one-time gains and losses.

Shares of United Tech, a Dow index member whose products serve the aerospace and commercial building sectors, were off 1.9 percent in mid-day trading, while those of most rival manufacturers traded higher.

"A little bit slower order growth may have spooked some people," Edward Jones analyst Christian Mayes said. "We have had strong growth the last few quarters and it slowed down a bit."

Orders at Otis increased 3 percent but they were essentially unchanged in China, where the company is seeking to capitalize on rising urban populations.

United Tech Chief Financial Officer Greg Hayes noted that a year ago, orders at Otis had risen 39 percent in China, making for a difficult comparison this quarter.

Analysts have been concerned that a slowdown in the Chinese economy could undermine United Tech's commercial building business, which also includes air conditioners and security systems.   Continued...