UPDATE 1-Lear sales beats estimates on strong US demand for auto parts
Jan 31 (Reuters) - Lear Corp reported a better-than-expected 14 percent rise in quarterly revenue as an increase in U.S. vehicle sales boosted demand for its car seats and electrical power systems.
Lear and other auto parts makers such as BorgWarner Inc and Visteon Corp have been helped by strong U.S. auto sales, which hit a six-year high in 2013.
Global vehicle production increased 6 percent in the fourth quarter, with a 5 percent rise in North America, Lear said.
Revenue at the company, which supplies parts to General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co among others, rose to $4.26 billion in the quarter from $3.72 billion a year earlier.
Analysts on average were expecting revenue of $4.05 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
However, a 7 percent fall in vehicle production in South America hurt Lear's quarterly profit. The company's adjusted earnings of $1.55 per share missed analysts' expectations by 4 cents.
Net income attributable to Lear fell to $72.8 million, or 88 cents per share, from $881.9 million, or $9.00 per share, a year earlier.
The year-earlier quarter included a $767 million tax benefit from a reversal of valuation allowance related to deferred tax assets in the United States.
The company maintained its full-year sales forecast it gave two weeks back. It expects sales of $16.9 to $17.4 billion.
Analysts on average are expecting revenue of $17.08 billion.
Lear shares closed at $76.84 on the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday. The stock has risen about 58 percent in the past year.
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