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Kimberly-Clark Corp. posts 24% rise in quarterly profit

SAN ANTONIO — Kimberly-Clark Corp., the maker of Kleenex tissues, Huggies diapers and other consumer products, said Monday its profit rose 24 percent in the third quarter with help from sales growth and cost reductions.

The Dallas-based company, which has facilities in Ogden and Draper, raised its earnings guidance for the year, and the company's shares rose $3.05, or 4.5 percent, to close at $70.19 Monday.

Earnings rose to $453.1 million, or $1.04 a share for the July-September period, up from $364.2 million, or 79 cents a share, a year ago. Sales climbed nearly 10 percent to a record $4.6 billion in the quarter, up from $4.2 billion last year.

The company said higher sales, helped by volume growth and favorable currency exchanges, allowed the company to generate higher profits despite about $70 million in inflation costs, mostly from fiber and other materials costs.

Still, the rising cost of fiber and other materials is pressuring profit margins, so the company plans to raise the prices on consumer and professional goods. Prices on consumer tissue, diapers and child-care products will go up starting in February, Falk said.