Industrial sector exchange traded funds were leading the charge Thursday after Union Pacific (NYSE: UNP) announced strong quarterly profits and Honeywell (NYSE: HON) provided an optimistic forward guidance.
The Industrial Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLI) rose 1.2 on Thursday.
Supporting the bounce in the industrial segment, U.S. railroad operator Union Pacific Corp. revealed better-than-expected quarterly profits on price increases and cost constrols that offset the impact of severe winter weather-related and record flooding damages, Reuters reports.
Union Pacific shares jumped 4.7% on Thursday. UNP makes up 5.3% of XLI’s underlying portfolio.
Chief Executive Lance Fritz told Reuters that efforts to streamline operations and create surge capacity allowed railway crews to reroute the 50 to 60 daily trains that use the flooded east-west main line for almost two weeks.
“We’re gaining traction… I see us coming back quickly and strongly,” Fritz said.
Meanwhile, Honeywell raised its full-year guidance after its strong business aviation and defense sales helped generate a better-than-expected increase in first-quarter earnings, the Financial Times reports.
Honeywell shares were 3.6% higher Thursday. HON makes up 5.1% of XLI’s underlying portfolio.
The industrial conglomerate stated that it now expects earnings for 2019 to come in between $7.90 to $8.15 a share, compared to the $7.80 to $8.10 range it previously projected just three months ago. Additionally, the organic sales growth outlook was also raised and will now be in the 3% to 6% range compared to the company’s previous forecast of 2% to 5% range.
“We are very pleased with the start to 2019,” Darius Adamczyk, chairman and chief executive, said.
The positive guidance suggests that ongoing concerns over the outlook for global economic growth, US-China trade talks and the effects of Boeing’s recent worldwide grounding of its 737 Max aircraft have so far had little impact on Honeywell’s business operations.
Furthermore, organic sales growth due to robust demand for air travel bolstered Honeywell’s all-important aerospace business.
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