3M Shares Higher on 4Q Profit

By IndustrialsFOXBusiness

3M (NYSE:MMM) reported stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit on industrial and transportation growth and reaffirmed its fiscal view, sending its shares higher Thursday morning.

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The Minneapolis-based diversified manufacturer said it earned $954 million, or $1.35 a share, compared with $928 million, or $1.28 a share, in the year-earlier period.

The results were ahead of average analyst estimates of $1.31 in a Thomson Reuters poll. Its shares were up 1.2%.

Revenue for the three-month period was $7.1 billion, up 5.7% from $6.71 billion a year ago, narrowly beating the Street’s view of $7.09 billion.

The maker of Post-Its, Scotch tape and consumer electronics components attributed the gains to a 14.3% sales increase in its industrial and transportation sector, with double-digit growth across all of its geographic regions, followed by an increase of 9.4% and 6.1% in its safety and security, and consumer and office segments, respectively.

3M, which has said acquisition would boost this year’s results, attributed some of the gains in the industrial segment to new purchases.

However, revenue declined in the display and graphics segment, hurt by what it called deteriorating demand for consumer electronics as the broader economic environment continued to weigh on consumer sentiment.

“We were resilient enough to achieve these results in the face of deteriorating demand in both Western Europe and consumer electronics,” 3M CEO George Buckley said in a statement.

The company warned that slower growth will likely persist into the first half of 2012 and said it would continue focusing on its bottom line and innovative solutions to further differentiate the company.

3M reaffirmed its fiscal 2012 earnings guidance in the range of $6.25 to $6.50 a share. Wall Street is looking for a profit of $6.30.

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