The Dow Chemical Co. said Thursday it had net income of $1.5 billion, or $1.18 a share, in the first quarter, up from $1.0 billion, or 79 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Operating per-share earnings came to 84 cents, ahead of the FactSet consensus of 76 cents. But sales fell to $12.4 billion from $14.5 billion, missing the FactSet consensus of $12.9 billion. The sales decline was mostly due to price declines, as crude oil prices fell and the strong dollar weighed. "Looking ahead, we expect geopolitical and economic uncertainty throughout 2015, although the oil market is projected to be more favorable behind growing global demand in the coming quarters," Chief Executive Andrew Liveris said in a statement. Dow shares were slightly higher in premarket trade and have gained 9.7% in the year so far, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 1.2%.
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