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Praxair raises dividend, to buy back $1.5 bln in stock

Jan 29 (Reuters) - Praxair Inc, the largest industrial gas supplier in the Americas, raised its dividend by 8 percent and said it would buy back stock worth $1.5 billion, after reporting a 15 percent rise in quarterly profit.

The company's net income rose to $474 million, or $1.59 per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31 from $414 million, or $1.38 per share, a year earlier.

Sales climbed 7.5 percent to $3.01 billion.