Kimberly-Clark 3rd-quarter net income rises

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Associated Press

Posted on October 22, 2013 at 10:00 AM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 22 at 10:02 AM

DALLAS (AP) — Kimberly-Clark's third-quarter net income rose 6 percent as the consumer products maker cut costs to offset flat revenue.

The maker of Kleenex tissue and Huggies diapers also raised the lower end of its full-year guidance and shares rose more than 3 percent in morning trading.

Kimberly-Clark has cut costs to offset higher prices for raw materials such as fiber, energy and fuel. Meanwhile, the company is in the midst of restructuring its Western and Central Europe operations, including exiting the diaper business in most areas, and selling or exiting some lower-margin businesses in some markets.

Net income after paying preferred dividends for the three months ended Sept. 30 rose nearly 6 percent to $546 million, or $1.42 per share. That compares with $517 million, or $1.30 per share, a year ago. Excluding restructuring costs for changes in Europe, net income was $1.44.

Analysts, on average, expected $1.40 per share, according to FactSet.

Revenue was nearly flat at $5.26 billion, compared with $5.24 billion a year ago. Analysts expected $5.23 billion.

Revenue from personal care products fell 1 percent to $2.4 billion, with flat sales in North America and a 40 percent drop in Europe, where the company is making strategic changes.

Revenue from consumer tissue rose 1 percent to $1.6 billion.

For the year, Dallas-based Kimberly-Clark expects net income of $5.65 to $5.75 per share, from prior guidance of $5.60 to $5.75 per share. Analysts expect $5.25 per share.

Shares rose $3.44 or 3.5 percent, to $102.27 during morning trading. The stock is close to its 52-week high of $106.54 and started the session up about 22 percent since the start of the year.

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