CHICAGO (Reuters) - Kimberly-Clark Corp <KMB.N> on Monday posted a lower quarterly profit and said this year's earnings could come in below earlier expectations as the rapid rise in costs for pulp and other goods pressures its profitability.
The maker of Kleenex tissues and Huggies diapers earned $350 million, or 86 cents per share, down from $384 million, or 92 cents per share, a year earlier.
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Sales rose 4 percent to $5.03 billion.
Kimberly-Clark now expects materials costs to rise $450 million to $550 million this year, more than double its earlier assumption, due to higher costs for everything from pulp to oil-based materials.
It forecast 2011 adjusted earnings of $4.80 to $5.05 per share, with sales up about 4 percent to 6 percent, versus its January forecast of a profit of $4.90 to $5.05 per share, with a sales increase of 3 percent to 4 percent.
(Reporting by Jessica Wohl, editing by Maureen Bavdek)