Nike’s fourth-quarter profit jumps 14 percent, shares soar 

Posted June 27, 2011, at 5:48 p.m.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Nike Inc.’s fourth-quarter net profit rose 14 percent to beat expectations as the company’s sales improved around the globe.

The world’s largest athletic shoe company reported Monday that it earned $594 million, or $1.24 per share, for the quarter. That’s up from the $522 million, or $1.06 per share, it earned in the same quarter last year.

Nike’s total revenue rose 14 percent to $5.77 billion.

The results handily beat the $1.16 per share on revenue of $5.53 that analysts polled by FactSet were anticipating. The news sent shares of the company, based in Beaverton, Ore., soaring in after-hours trading.

Nike had warned investors that higher costs would cut into its profit margins. The company, like many of its peers, is dealing with higher costs for materials, labor and freight.

The company was able to make up for the rising costs with higher sales volume. Revenue improved in every market except Japan during the quarter.

“We delivered exceptional results in extraordinary times,” Mark Parker, Nike’s CEO said.

For the full year, Nike earned $2.13 billion, or $4.39 per share, compared with $1.9 billion, or $3.86 per share, for the prior year.

Shares of Nike jumped $3.15, nearly 4 percent, to $81.62 in after-hours trading.

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