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Michelin profits rise despite tough car market

PARIS (AP) -- Tire maker Michelin says its profits rose 7.5 percent last year despite a struggling car market in Europe, and expects to keep up volumes this year.

Michelin SA said in a statement Tuesday that it was helped by growth in emerging markets and high margins on specialty tires.

Micheiln reported €21.47 billion ($28.75 billion) in sales, up 5.8 percent from €20.72 billion in 2011 but slightly below forecasts of €21.62 billion by analysts surveyed by FactSet.

The company, based in Clermont-Ferrand in central France, said 2012 profits were €1.57 billion, up from €1.46 billion the year before.

Michelin says it expects to "hold volumes steady in 2013, in a market environment that is uncertain in mature markets but still expanding in the new ones."