Ingersoll-Rand PLC , a maker of heating and cooling systems for homes, businesses and transport, reported a 5 percent drop in quarterly profit on Friday and said it continued to see challenges in its markets.
Net earnings were $216.6 million, or 65 cents per share, compared with $227.7 million, or 70 cents per share a year earlier.
Excluding restructuring costs, earnings from continuing operations were 70 cents per share. That was 9 cents higher than average analyst estimates, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue fell 19 percent to $3.48 billion, below Wall Street forecasts for sales of $3.56 billion.
Ingersoll's biggest segment, which provides air conditioning systems and services, reported a 14-percent drop in sales, partly reflecting lower activity in the non-residential construction sector. The decline in sales to residential customers was less severe.
Ingersoll said the U.S. housing market and replacement spending remain weak but are falling at a slower rate.
Ingersoll, which also makes security technology, air compressors and utility vehicles, said it was confident of increasing earnings next year even if markets remain weak.
With productivity gains outpacing cost inflation, Ingersoll expects to earn between $2 and $2.40 per share in 2010. It forecast this year's earnings between $1.60 and $1.70 per share.
Analysts were looking for earnings of $1.58 this year and $1.98 next year, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
(Reporting by Nick Zieminski; Editing by Derek Caney)