Stocks to Consider and Updates

3M Profit, Sales Rise In Line with Forecasts

MMM  Diversified manufacturer 3M Co. (NYSE: MMM – $145.70) reported second-quarter earnings of $1.91 per share, an increase of 11.7% versus the second quarter of 2013 and in line with estimates. Sales grew 4.9% year-on-year to $8.1 billion and all geographies and business segments contributed to the strong performance. Street views pegged revenue at $8.09 billion. Net income was $1.3 billion and the company converted 103% of net income to free cash flow in the quarter. Organic local-currency sales growth was 6.4% in its Electronics and Energy Group, 5.1% in Health Care, 4.7% in Industrial, 4.7% in Safety and Graphics and 4.2% in Consumer. On a geographic basis, organic local-currency sales grew 6.6% in Asia Pacific, 4.8% in EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa), 4.5% in the U.S. and 2.7% in Latin America/Canada. In addition, 3M paid $556 million in cash dividends to shareholders and repurchased $1.4 billion of its own shares during the quarter. MMM also confirmed its 2014 full-year performance expectations and continues to expect earnings of $7.30 to $7.55 per share and organic local-currency sales growth of 3 to 6 percent. Although not cheap at over 19 times full-year 2014 earnings estimates and in all-time high record territory, it is not too difficult to make a case for 3M for conservative accounts as the shares get high marks for stability, earnings predictability, financial strength and dividend growth.


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