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Tickers in this Article: KMB
Kimberly-Clark (NYSE:KMB) announced its results for the most recent quarter on October 24, 2012. Kimberly-Clark manufactures and markets a range of mostly paper-based consumer products.

Earnings season is important to investors because it shows how much profit is left in the company's hand after deducting costs from revenue. SEE: How To Decode A Company's Earnings Reports

The Numbers: Kimberly-Clark managed to beat EPS estimates, though the company's revenues failed to top expectations. The company reported adjusted net income of $1.34 per share versus the $1.32 per share estimate and revenues of $5.2 billion versus the $5.28 billion estimate. Revenue fell 3.4% from the same period last year. Slumping revenue in the last quarter ends Kimberly-Clark's streak of four consecutive quarters of revenue increases. Net income for the third quarter was $517 million. This is 19.7% higher than the year-ago quarter. Last quarter marked the third in a row of rising net income.

A Look Back: Net income has increased 9.8% year-over-year on average across the last five quarters. The biggest gain came in the first quarter, when income climbed 33.7% from the year-earlier quarter.

Looking Ahead: Analysts appear increasingly optimistic about the company's results for the next quarter. The average estimate for the fourth quarter has moved up from $1.32 a share to $1.33 over the last 90 days. When analyst increase earnings estimates investors can assume business has been stronger than first thought and is an encouraging sign for investors. The average estimate for the fiscal year is $5.19 per share, a rise from $5.16 90 days ago.

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