3M Co. (MMM) posted third-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates on a rebound at its electronics business and demand for health-care products.
Net income rose 5.9 percent to $1.23 billion, or $1.78 a share, from $1.16 billion, or $1.65, a year earlier, the St. Paul, Minnesota-based company said today in a statement. The average of 15 estimates compiled by Bloomberg was $1.75.
Sales at 3M’s electronics and energy business rose 2.5 percent, after posting declines in the last two quarters amid what the company called “soft” demand. 3M, led by Chief Executive Officer Inge Thulin, cited growth in Asia, Latin America and Europe.
“It was an excellent quarter for 3M on many fronts and our businesses continue to grow profitably,” Thulin said on a conference call today with analysts.
3M gained 1.3 percent to $124.85 at 9:39 a.m. in New York. The shares had gained 33 percent this year through yesterday.
The electronics and energy unit’s sales increase to $1.45 billion followed declines of 3.2 percent in the second quarter and 3.3 percent in the first quarter.
Organic sales, which strip out impacts from acquisitions and foreign exchange, rose 4.3 percent in Europe, Middle East and Africa and advanced 6.8 in Asia Pacific. Latin America posted with organic sales growth of 11 percent.
3M narrowed its 2013 earnings forecast to $6.65 to $6.75 a share, from a previous range of $6.60 to $6.85. Analysts projected $6.70, the average of 16 estimates.
Sales in the quarter rose 5.6 percent to $7.9 billion, beating the average estimate of $7.85 billion. The gain was led by revenue increases of 5.5 percent to $1.33 billion at the health-care unit and 8.6 percent to $2.67 billion at the industrial unit, which was helped by the $860 million acquisition of Ceradyne Inc. in November.
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