Boeing posted stronger-than-expected results for the third quarter yesterday and raised its forecast for the full year as its defence business improved and commercial aircraft deliveries surged. The company said it earned $1bn, or $1.35 a share, compared with $1.1bn, $1.46 a share, a year ago. Revenue rose to $20bn from $17.7bn. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S had expected Boeing to post earnings per share of $1.13 for the quarter that ended September 30. Defence revenue fell 4% $7.8bn, compared with a year ago, but margins widened to 10.5% from 10%. Boeing raised its full-year earnings forecast to between $4.80 and $4.95 a share, compared with $4.40 to $4.60 previously. It said revenue for the full year should reach $80.5bn to $82bn, due to more sales in the defence, space and security businesses. The report cheered investors, who sent the stock up 2.6% to $74.70 in premarket trading. The commercial aircraft business delivered 22 more jets in the quarter than a year ago, due in large part to 787 deliveries that started a year ago, opening a second 787 assembly line, in South Carolina, and ramping up output of 737 and 777 jets. The delivery increase drove revenue in the commercial airline business up 28% to $12.2bn.