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Tractor Supply up after hours on 4Q results

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (AP) -- Tractor Supply Co.'s shares jumped in after-hours trading Wednesday after the farm and ranch supply store chain's fourth-quarter profit beat market expectations and it issued a strong full-year forecast.

The retailer earned $79.5 million, or $1.11 per share, for the quarter that ended Dec. 29. That compares with $70.5 million, or 96 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2011.

Revenue increased nearly 4 percent to $1.29 billion, with a boost from an extra week in the quarter. Sales at stores open at least a year increased 4.7 percent. That is a key indicator of a retailer's financial performance because it strips away the impact of recently opened or closed stores. The company opened 25 new stores in the fourth quarter.

Tractor Supply said the gain was driven by strong sales of animal and pet-related merchandise.

Analysts polled by FactSet expected the company to earn $1.05 per share on revenue of $1.29 billion.

For all of 2012, Tractor supply made $276.5 million, or $3.80 per share, on net sales of $4.66 billion.

Tractor Supply expects to earn between $4.32 and $4.40 per share for 2013 on revenue of $5.07 billion to $5.17 billion. Analysts forecast earnings of $4.39 per share on revenue of $5.14 billion. The company also expects revenue from established stores to increase by 3 to 5 percent.

Shares rose $5.81, or 6.2 percent, to $100.25 in after-hours trading. The stock rose 45 cents to close the regular session at $94.44.