Honeywell (HON) reported first quarter 2017 results on the morning of April 21, with revenue of $9.49 billion, a slight drop from $9.52 billion a year ago. The company reported EPS of $1.71, an increase from $1.56 y/y. The Street had been looking for EPS of $1.62 and revenue of $9.33 billion, allowing Honeywell to beat estimates easily. The company also raised the low end of its guidance by 5 cents for the full-year 2017, bring it to a range of $6.90 to $7.10. At the mid-point, Honeywell's guidance now goes to $7.00; analysts are looking for full-year EPS of $7.03. 

The company saw its aerospace unit sales decline by 4% to $3.546 billion from $3.706 billion the year before. Home and building technologies rose by 3  to $2.553 billion from $2.477 billion, while performance materials and technologies fell by 9% to $2.07 billion from $2.28 billion. Finally, safety and productivity solutions saw sales jumps by 25% to $1.32 billion from $1.06 billion. 

The company did an excellent job of offsetting its revenue decline by bringing expenses down in the quarter to $7.77 billion from $7.89 billion in the prior year. The company reported income before tax of $1.72 billion, up from $1.63 billion in 2016. Finally, the company was also able to bring down its tax expense to $392 million from $402 million year-over-year. The company's tax expense rate fell to roughly 23% in the first quarter, down from approximately 24.5% in the first quarter of 2016. The total number of diluted shares outstanding decreased in the first quarter to 773.9 million from 779.6 million in the previous year. 

Honeywell has done an incredible job over the years of growing its revenues, and the stock price has performed very well as a result. 

HON Chart

HON data by YCharts

Analysts are projecting modest earnings and revenue growth for the company over the next few years, and that makes valuations fair with the stock at current levels. 

The stock price has easily outperformed the S&P 500 over the past decade, up nearly 150% versus the S&P 500's 59% return. Total returns for shares of Honeywell have approached nearly 220% over the previous 10 years. 

HON Chart

HON data by YCharts

The market is apparently happy with the results and the comments from the conference call. Shares of Honeywell gained nearly 2.7% on Ap[ril 21 as broader markets lost ground. 

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