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GENERAL DYNAMICS ANNOUNCES FIRST QUARTER 1992 RESULTS; EARNINGS FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS INCREASED 44 PERCENT; CESSNA GAIN $8.49 PER SHARE

GENERAL DYNAMICS ANNOUNCES FIRST QUARTER 1992 RESULTS; EARNINGS FROM CONTINUING OPERATIONS INCREASED 44 PERCENT; CESSNA GAIN $8.49 PER SHARE
 FALLS CHURCH, Va., April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- General Dynamics Corporation (NYSE: GD) today reported 1992 first quarter earnings from continuing operations of $72 million, or $1.71 per share, an increase of 44 percent versus the $50 million, or $1.20 per share, reported in the year-ago period. Sales in both the 1992 and 1991 first quarters were $2.1 billion.
 The Company completed the sale of the Cessna Aircraft Company for $600 million during the first quarter, recognizing a gain of $358 million (after tax), or $8.49 per share. Excluding this gain, earnings from discontinued operations in the 1992 first quarter were $5 million, or $0.12 per share, as compared to $7 million, or $0.17 per share, in the 1991 first quarter.
 Total net earnings, the combination of earnings from continuing operations and earnings from the discontinued operations, were $435 million, or $10.32 per share, in the 1992 first quarter, versus $57 million, or $1.37 per share, in the year-ago period.
 William A. Anders, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "Our operating results were in line with our expectations and show the positive results of efforts to increase efficiency and productivity throughout our operations. Looking forward, we are encouraged by the increasing congressional support for the Seawolf program and believe this reflects a growing recognition of the need to preserve our nation's premier submarine design and manufacturing capabilities."
 "We are also encouraged by the progress made on our Atlas Commercial Launch business during the first quarter," said Anders. "Two successful launches were completed and three new orders were received. The program backlog now stands at 25 funded orders plus commitments for an additional 11 vehicles. A total of five launches have been completed to date."
 "During the quarter we continued to increase the financial strength and flexibility of the Company which we believe is necessary in the face of the increasingly challenging industry environment. We reduced debt by approximately $350 million, increased the regular quarterly dividend 60 percent, from $.25 per share to $.40 per share, and continued to generate strong cash flow. We remain committed to returning to our shareholders cash in excess of our liquidity and investment needs. We continue to study several alternative methods."
 The backlog of funded orders at the end of the 1992 first quarter stood at $17.5 billion and total backlog (funded and unfunded) increased to $26.0 billion, the latter amount representing about 3 years of sales. Comparable backlog amounts at the end of the first quarter of 1991 were $17.0 billion and $21.7 billion, respectively.
 GENERAL DYNAMICS
 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF EARNINGS (UNAUDITED)
 (Dollars in millions, except per share amounts)
 FIRST QUARTER
 1992 1991
 NET SALES $ 2,118 $ 2,140
 OPERATING COSTS
 AND EXPENSES 2,009 2,060
 OPERATING EARNINGS 109 80
 INTEREST, NET (2) (12)
 OTHER INCOME,
 NET -- 4
 EARNINGS FROM
 CONTINUING
 OPERATIONS BEFORE
 INCOME TAXES 107 72
 PROVISION FOR
 INCOME TAXES 35 22
 EARNINGS FROM
 CONTINUING
 OPERATIONS 72 50
 DISCONTINUED
 OPERATIONS, NET
 OF INCOME TAXES:
 EARNINGS FROM
 OPERATIONS 5 7
 GAIN ON DISPOSAL 358 --
 363 7
 NET EARNINGS $ 435 $ 57
 EARNINGS PER
 SHARE FROM
 CONTINUING
 OPERATIONS $ 1.71 $ 1.20
 EARNINGS PER
 SHARE FROM
 DISCONTINUED
 OPERATIONS:
 EARNINGS FROM
 OPERATIONS .12 .17
 GAIN ON DISPOSAL 8.49 -
 8.61 .17
 NET EARNINGS
 PER SHARE $10.32 $ 1.37
 GENERAL DYNAMICS
 NET SALES AND OPERATING EARNINGS BY SEGMENT (UNAUDITED)
 (Dollars in millions)
 FIRST QUARTER
 1992 1991
 NET SALES:
 MILITARY AIRCRAFT $ 709 $ 727
 SUBMARINES 423 414
 MISSILE SYSTEMS 310 367
 LAND SYSTEMS 286 282
 SPACE SYSTEMS 126 64
 OTHER 264 286
 TOTAL $ 2,118 $ 2,140
 OPERATING EARNINGS:
 MILITARY AIRCRAFT $ 46 $ 37
 SUBMARINES 21 20
 MISSILE SYSTEMS 17 18
 LAND SYSTEMS 26 26
 SPACE SYSTEMS (10) (1)
 OTHER 9 (20)
 TOTAL $ 109 $ 80
 -0- 4/15/92 R
 /CONTACT: Alvin A. Spivak of General Dynamics, 703-876-3190/
 (GD) CO: General Dynamics Corporation ST: Virginia IN: ARO SU: ERN


TS -- NY009R -- 8450 04/15/92 07:32 EDT
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Date:Apr 15, 1992
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