General Dynamics earned a record $437.3 million on revenue of $9.3 billion in 1987, up sharply from the $52.5-million loss on revenue of $8.9 billion last year. The St. Louis-based defense contractor said the gains were lead by nearly a 50% increase in F-16 deliveries and by the benefits of tax law changes related to deferred taxes payable in 1987. The 1986 loss resulted from a $420-million writeoff on the purchase of Cessna Aircraft. Chairman Stanley C. Pace termed a $4.4-billion Navy contract for development of the Advanced Tactical Aircraft awarded to the company in 1987 "without question . . . one of the most important new military aircraft contracts to be awarded in this decade."