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DuPont 1Q profit more than doubles

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[April 27, 2010]  DOVER, Del. (AP) -- Chemical maker DuPont Co. on Tuesday said it more than doubled its earnings for the first quarter as business improved across all operating units and market regions.

The company also increased its full-year earnings guidance as it reported earnings of about $1.14 billion, or $1.24 per share, for the quarter ending March 31, up from $488 million, or 54 cents per share, for the first quarter of last year.

Revenue totaled $8.48 billion, up 23 percent from $6.87 billion, for the corresponding period last year, as DuPont, based in Wilmington, Del., benefited from volume gains, price increases and positive currency effects.

The results easily beat expectations of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who predicted a profit of $1.06 cents per share on revenue of just over $8 billion.

Overall sales volume increased by 19 percent, led by a 65 percent volume increase in the Asia-Pacific region.

Performance among DuPont's various business segments was led by the electronics and communications unit, which reported a 60 percent increase in volume on strong global demand, led by the Asia-Pacific region, and increased demand for photovoltaics.

DuPont's performance materials unit saw volume increase by 56 percent as demand improved in the automotive, industrial, consumer and electronic markets.

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CEO Ellen Kullman said the first-quarter results reflect DuPont's efforts to cut costs, respond to customers needs and focus on research and development.

"Our intense focus on customers, sustained R&D investments and productivity improvements are delivering growth," Kullman said. "Macro trends drove first-quarter demand for our science-based innovations, and DuPont was ready."

The company increased its full-year earnings guidance to a range of $2.50 to $2.70 per share, up from $2.15 to $2.45 per share.

[Associated Press; By RANDALL CHASE]

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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