Estée Lauder 2nd quarter profit rises on U.S. strength

Tue Feb 5, 2013 7:51am EST

Feb 5 (Reuters) - Estée Lauder Cos Inc reported higher quarterly sales and profit on Tuesday and reaffirmed its full-year forecast for sales growth, pointing to strong U.S. demand, which is helping counteract weak markets like Southern Europe and South Korea.

Estee Lauder reported net income of $447.5 million, or $1.13 a share, for the second quarter ended Dec. 31, up from $396.7 million, or $1.00 a share, a year earlier.

Sales in the fiscal second quarter grew 7.1 percent to $2.93 billion, with skin care showing the largest gains.

The company, known for its namesake brand as well as lines such as La Mer and MAC, still expects sales growth this year of 6 percent to 7 percent in local currency terms, though it expects third-quarter sales to increase 3 to 4 percent.

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