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Praxair 3Q net rises, matches Wall Street's view

Associated Press Published: October 24, 2012

DANBURY, Conn. (AP) — Praxair Inc., which produces industrial gases and surface coatings, said Wednesday that its third-quarter net income edged up partly because of an income tax benefit. Revenue declined, however, and its fourth-quarter and full-year forecasts missed analysts' expectations.

North American sales were helped in the third quarter by increased prices and solid demand in the manufacturing, energy and metals markets. Sales rose in Asia as new plants began running for chemicals and metals customers. Sales in Europe and South America were hurt by weak economic conditions and the stronger dollar.

The company also announced that it has a $2.6 billion backlog of new projects under construction.

For the period ended Sept. 30, the company earned $430 million, or $1.43 per share, up from $429 million, or $1.40 per share, a year earlier.

Removing an income tax benefit, cost-cutting charges and a pension settlement charge, earnings were $1.39 per share. That matched the expectations of analysts surveyed by FactSet.

Revenue declined 5 percent to $2.77 billion from $2.9 billion, weighed down by the stronger dollar and softness in Europe. Wall Street forecast $2.83 billion in revenue.

Praxair foresees full-year adjusted earnings of $5.54 to $5.59 per share on revenue of about $11.2 billion.

Analysts predict earnings of $5.63 per share on revenue of $11.34 billion.

The Danbury, Conn.-based company anticipates fourth-quarter earnings of $1.35 to $1.40 per share. Wall Street expects $1.43 per share.

Its shares closed at $104.95 in trading Tuesday. That is near its 52-week high of $116.93 set in late April. Its shares traded as low as $93.46 last November.


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