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Published October 26, 2010, 03:32 PM

Ecolab 3Q Profit Rises 20 Percent

Cleaning and pest-control services company Ecolab Inc. said Tuesday that its third-quarter profit rose 20 percent on higher domestic and international sales. But, shares fell on a revised 2010 outlook.

By: Associated Press,

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Cleaning and pest-control services company Ecolab Inc. said Tuesday that its third-quarter profit rose 20 percent on higher domestic and international sales. But, shares fell on a revised 2010 outlook.

Ecolab said its net income grew to $174.2 million, or 74 cents per share, in the three months ended Sept. 30 from $145 million, or 60 cents per share, in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue increased 1 percent to $1.56 billion from just under $1.55 billion.

Analysts expected profit of 65 cents per share and $1.59 billion in revenue, according to a Thomson Reuters poll.

Ecolab said its U.S. cleaning and sanitizing revenue grew 4 percent to $719 million, and other U.S. service revenue was flat at $118 million. International revenue rose 3 percent to $775 million.

Looking ahead, the company expects adjusted fourth-quarter profit between 59 cents and 61 cents per share, while analysts expect 62 cents per share. For the full year, the company expects profit between $2.22 and $2.24 per share, narrowed from prior guidance of $2.21 to $2.26 per share. Analysts expect $2.24 per share in profit in 2010.

In afternoon trading, Ecolab stock slid $2.82, or 5.4 percent, to $49.30. The stock has ranged from $40.66 to $52.46 over the past year.

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