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3M (NYSE: MMM) today reported fourth-quarter earnings of $1.41 per share, an increase of 4.4 percent versus the fourth quarter of 2011. Operating income was $1.4 billion and operating income margins for the quarter were 19.5 percent. Fourth-quarter net income was $1.0 billion and free cash flow was $1.2 billion.
Sales rose 4.2 percent year-on-year to $7.4 billion, an all-time fourth-quarter record. Organic local-currency sales grew 4.3 percent, acquisitions added 0.9 percent to sales and currency impacts reduced sales by 1.0 percent year-on-year.
Organic local-currency sales growth was 8.7 percent in Consumer and Office, 8.3 percent in Display and Graphics, 5.9 percent in Health Care, 3.9 percent in Industrial and Transportation and 1.8 percent in Electro and Communications; Safety, Security and Protection Services declined 1.7 percent year-on-year. On a geographic basis, organic local-currency sales grew 9.7 percent in Latin America/Canada, 5.8 percent in Asia Pacific, 5.2 percent in the U.S. and declined 1.0 percent in EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa).
For the full year 2012, 3M posted record sales of $29.9 billion, up 1.0 percent year-on-year. Organic local-currency sales grew 2.6 percent and acquisitions added 0.8 percent to sales. Foreign currency translation reduced sales by 2.4 percent year-on-year.
Four of the company’s six business segments posted full-year organic local-currency growth, led by Health Care at 4.7 percent and Industrial and Transportation at 4.5 percent. Latin America/Canada was the fastest-growing geographic region in 2012 at 10.9 percent followed by the U.S. at 4.2 percent.
Full-year 2012 earnings were $6.32 per share, an increase of 6.0 percent. Operating margins were 21.7 percent and return on invested capital was 20 percent.
“Fourth-quarter was a good finish to a successful year for 3M,” said Inge G. Thulin, 3M chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Our people executed well in the face of challenging macroeconomic conditions and we have built good momentum to innovate and move forward in 2013.”