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Sales growth lifts CR Bard's 4Q profit

MURRAY HILL, N.J. (AP) -- Medical device maker C.R. Bard Inc. on Thursday that its net income rose 13 percent as sales improved and costs shrank.

The company said that its revenue edged up 1 percent as it sold more devices used to treat cancer and urology conditions. International sales rose 6 percent, countering a 1 percent drop in U.S. sales.

Bard said earnings after paying preferred dividends rose to $126 million, or $1.52 per share, from $111.8 million, or $1.30 per share, a year earlier. Excluding restructuring charges and other one-time items the company said it would have earned $1.70 per share in the latest period.

Revenue edged up to $762.6 million from $751.9 million in the prior-year period. Urology product sales rose 3 percent to $195.8 million and cancer treatment device sales grew 5 percent to $210.5 million. Surgical supply sales picked up 4 percent to $121.3 million, while vascular product sales fell 4 percent to $212 million.

The results topped analysts' average forecast for net income excluding items of $1.67 per share and $757.1 million in revenue, according to FactSet.

For the full year, Bard's net income rose 62 percent to $530.1 million, or $6.16 per share, from $328 million, or $3.69 per share. Revenue grew 2 percent to $2.96 billion from nearly $2.9 billion.

"While the near-term environment remains challenging, especially in our developed markets, we are executing a strategy to return to faster growth through investments in emerging markets and new product categories," said Chairman and CEO Timothy M. Ring in a statement.

Shares of C.R. Bard lost 16 cents to close at $102.07 Thursday before the report. The stock fell $1.57 to $100.50 in aftermarket trading.

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