May 12, 2011 / 10:03 PM / in 7 years

EADS Q1 seen overshadowed by air show buzz

* Q1 operating profit seen up 14 pct at 94.5 mln euros - poll

* Q1 revenues seen up 2.9 pct at 9.213 billion euros - poll

* Analysts focus on sales prospects for June air show

PARIS, May 13 (Reuters) - Currency swings and development spending on future Airbus jetliners may cloud quarterly earnings at Airbus parent EADS EAD.PA, with analysts already looking beyond them to prospects for new orders at the Paris Air Show.

The world’s second largest aerospace company after Boeing BA.N faced a steadily rising U.S. dollar through much of the first quarter, which also brought questions over the impact of Japan’s earthquake and Middle East tensions on its supply chain.

The company is in the midst of boosting spending on its A350 jetliner, designed to compete with Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, and analysts say these factors -- together with almost flat Airbus deliveries -- could drain excitement from first-quarter profits.

EADS is expected to report operating profit up 14 percent at 94.5 million euros on Friday, according to the average of a Reuters poll published on Wednesday, but forecasts vary over a wide range and the first quarter is not traditionally seen as a barometer.

Growth at helicopter division Eurocopter should offset a 10 percent profit drop at the Cassidian defence unit as pressure continues on German defence spending, according to the poll.

EADS releases its first-quarter trading statement at 0500 GMT. But analysts say they will be looking for sales prospects for the upcoming A320neo single-aisle jetliner at the June 20-26th airshow.

The revamped version of Airbus’s best-selling jet has been received well but analysts are concerned about what might happen to demand if Boeing opts for an even bolder redesign of its 737.

Boeing BA.N beat expectations with a 13 percent rise in first-quarter profit despite a slight decline in revenue as the company improved efficiency on asssembly lines. [ID:nN27107803]

EADS recently broke a two-year acquisition drought with a $640 million bid to buy Canadian repair firm Vector Aerospace RNO.TO, but is meanwhile under pressure to say what else it plans to do with a 11.9 billion euros ($16.9 billion) cash pile.

EADS shares closed up 0.25 percent at 21.82 euros.

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