July 28, 2009 / 11:53 AM / in 8 years

UPDATE 3-Textron says jet demand stabilizing, shares jump

* Q2 EPS ex-charges 8 cents vs view of loss of 1 cent

* Q2 revs down 29 pct to $2.6 bln

* Cuts 2009 sales target to $10.6 bln from $11 bln

* Shares rise 15 pct (Adds details on jet orders, stock move)

NEW YORK, July 28 (Reuters) - Textron Inc TXT.N, the world’s largest maker of corporate jets, posted a quarterly net loss on Tuesday, but still beat expectations and said the business jet market was stabilizing, sending shares up more than 15 percent in early trading.

Textron posted a net loss of $58 million, or 22 cents per share, for the second quarter, compared with a profit of $258 million, or $1.01 per share, a year earlier.

Excluding special charges, income from continuing operations was 8 cents per share. Analysts expected Textron to lose a penny a share.

Revenue fell 29 percent to $2.61 billion, slightly below Wall Street expectations of $2.62 billion.

The parent of Cessna and Citation jets that also makes Bell helicopters, EZ-Go golf carts and military vehicles, said it has made progress on reducing its finance portfolio.

Textron delivered 84 Cessna jets in the quarter, down from 117 jets last year. It said it saw early signs the business jet market was stabilizing at the end of the quarter, but cut its forecast for 2009 sales to about $10.6 billion from some $11 billion.

The company said it booked seven orders in June, compared with an average of three orders a month in the first five months of 2009.

Textron’s competitors in corporate jets include the Gulfstream unit of General Dynamics Corp GD.N and Canada’s Bombardier Inc BBDb.TO.

Cessna profit margins were better than expected, and the comments about stabilizing demand were a plus, Cowen & Co. analyst Cai von Rumohr said in a research note, adding the outlook may help General Dynamics.

Textron shares jumped $1.71, or 15.3 percent, to $12.86 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange, reaching their best level since April. General Dynamics gained 91 cents to $52.80.

It forecast 2009 profit from continuing operations of 33 cents to 63 cents a share.

Analysts were looking for profit of 38 cents on sales of $10.5 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.

Separately, Textron named a former Goldman Sachs GS.N executive as chief financial officer, effective Aug. 1. Frank Connor was most recently head of Goldman’s telecom investment banking group.

Textron also said John Garrison will head its Bell unit, replacing Richard Millman, who is retiring. (Reporting by Nick Zieminski; editing by Jeffrey Benkoe and Maureen Bavdek)

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