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Genuine Parts Takes a Genuine Hit

Genuine Parts stock has retreated after releasing its first-quarter earnings report.
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(Genuine Parts story updated with recent share price movement and S&P analyst view.)



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Genuine Parts

(GPC) - Get Genuine Parts Company Report

stock retreated 5.9% Friday to close at $42.70, after the release of its first quarter earnings report.

For the first quarter, Genuine Parts reported net income of $100.6 million, an increase of 13% over $89.2 million recorded in the same period last year, or 63 cents a share. Sales totaled $2.6 billion, up 6% beating the consensus the Wall Street estimate of 61 cents on revenue of $2.52 billion.

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The company said it's most encouraged by sales results in its industrial and electrical businesses.

"Sales were better than we projected, and weaker than expected gross margins were outweighed by cost cutting elsewhere," Standard & Poor's Equity Research analyst Efraim Levy noted in a research report. "We forecast increased sales as white-collar employment and manufacturing utilization rates improve."

Standard & Poor's has raised its 2010 earnings per share estimate by 4 cents to $2.71 and has initiated 2011 at $3.06. Levy is reiterating his strong buy opinion on Genuine Parts stock with a price target of $49.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York

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