Dec 11 Chemical maker DuPont boosted its
2012 forecast and announced a $1 billion stock buy-back on
Tuesday, a positive sign that demand has begun to improve
slightly for the company's Kevlar, Corian and other products.
The company will pay for the buy back with proceeds from the
sale of its slow-growing car paint business to Carlyle Group LP
for $4.9 billion cash.
The deal has yet to close and when it does, DuPont said it
will use $1 billion to buy back stock in 2013.
The buy-back, along with the positive comments around the
guidance, helped push DuPont's shares up 2 percent to $44.58 in
The chemical company now expects earnings this year at the
high end of a range between $3.25 and $3.30 per share. Analysts
expect earnings of $3.29 per share, according to Thomson Reuters
DuPont slashed its guidance in October, previously expecting
to earn at least $3.79 per share. That had analysts expecting
the worse, but Tuesday's comments about earnings at the "high
end" of the forecast suggest the situation is not as bad as
"While we are seeing indications that market conditions are
firming up in some areas, volatility and uncertainty also
persist," Chief Executive Ellen Kullman said in a statement.
However, the company's titanium dioxide (Ti02) sales remain
weak, executives said. Ti02 is a key paint pigment.