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Goodyear quarterly profit up 51 percent

CLEVELAND – Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.’s third-quarter profit rose 51 percent on strong performances in Latin America and North America, the tire manufacturer said Tuesday.

But shares dropped 5.8 percent Tuesday as the company’s sales dropped 5 percent, to below the level Wall Street expected.

Akron-based Goodyear said it earned $166 million, or 62 cents per share, for the July-September period. Excluding charges, Goodyear earned 68 cents per share, beating the Wall Street estimate by 1 cent.

Revenue fell to $5 billion from $5.26 billion, hurt by a drop in chemical sales in North America and changes in the value of Asian currencies. Analysts polled by FactSet expected higher sales of $5.27 billion.

Chairman and CEO Richard J. Kramer said the company, which operates a tire plant in the Town of Tonawanda, expects operating income for the year of more than $1.5 billion. It had predicted $1.4 billion to $1.5 billion.

“As the industry continues to recover, we see strong volume growth in the segments we are targeting,” Kramer said in a statement.

Goodyear sold more tires in North America and was aided by a shift in Latin America to higher-value replacement tires. Tire sales rose about 1 percent in North America, 3 percent in Europe-Middle East-Africa and 8 percent in Asia-Pacific.

Goodyear shares fell $1.29, to $20.76. It gained 60 percent this year.

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