FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) -- General Dynamics Corp. said Wednesday its first-quarter net income edged up about 1 percent, as lower operating costs offset a slight decrease in revenue.
The aerospace and defense company earned $571 million, or $1.62 per share, up $564 million, or $1.57 per share, from the same quarter the year before. A reduction in the number of outstanding shares from last year provided a 3-cent boost to the recent quarter's per-share results.
Revenue fell 2 percent to $7.4 billion from $7.58 billion.
The profit easily beat Wall Street predictions, while the revenue fell short. Analysts, on average, expected a profit of $1.50 per share on $7.54 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.
General Dynamics CEO Phebe Novakovic called the quarter's results a "strong start" to achieving the company's goals for the year, saying they reflect its continued focus on operations, cost improvement and cash generation.
Combat systems revenue tumbled 19 percent to $1.55 billion, but was partially offset by a 10 percent increase in aerospace revenue to $1.78 billion. Operating costs and expenses fell 2 percent to $6.58 billion.
Shares of General Dynamics rose $2.41, or 3.6 percent, to $69.50 in premarket trading. The stock closed Tuesday at $67.10, down about 3 percent since the start of the year.