LONDON Feb 23 Britain's BAE Systems
said it expected increased defence budgets to boost its earnings
by 5-10 percent this year after it met market expectations with
a 7 percent rise in 2016.
The company reported underlying earnings per share of 40.3
pence on sales up 1.1 billion pounds to 19 billion pounds
($23.6 billion), with the better-than-expected rise mainly
coming from foreign exchange benefits.
Chief Executive Ian King, who will retire at the end of
June, said 2016 was a good year for BAE Systems.
"With an improved outlook for defence budgets in a number of
our markets, we are well placed to continue to generate
attractive returns for shareholders," he said on Thursday.
($1 = 0.8043 pounds)
(Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by Kate Holton)