3M Co. is betting on growing sales for the second half of the year, based on a strong first half that included an uptick in sales of automotive products as well as office supplies and home improvement items.
3M MMM earlier Tuesday reported second-quarter adjusted earnings of $2.59 a share on sales of $8.95 billion. Analysts polled by FactSet expected the diversified industrial company to report adjusted EPS of $2.28 a share on sales of $8.53 billion.
Shares of 3M fell about 0.5% on Tuesday. So far this year, the stock has gained 14%, compared with gains of around 17% for the S&P 500 index. SPX
The company has called for full-year 2021 sales growth between 7% and 10%, compared with a previous expectation for total sales growth between 5% and 8%. 3M also forecast EPS between $9.70 and $10.10 for the year, compared with a prior expectation of between $9.20 and $9.70.
3M’s safety and industrial unit, its biggest by sales, reported a sales increase of 22%, including upticks for automotive aftermarket products and others. Personal safety sales declined, the company said.
In a decision that could have bearings on 3M’s future mask sales, the Center for Diseases Control and Prevention is expected to recommend people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to wear masks indoors, a reversal from a May decision that vaccinated people could forgo masks in most indoor spaces.
3M said its transportation and electronics unit saw sales rise 28% in the second quarter, which the company pinned on increases in sales of automotive and aerospace, transportation safety, and electronic products, among others.
Health care’s unit sales growth reached 25%, thanks to oral care, food safety, and others, 3M said.
The consumer unit’s sale rose 20%, on increases for office supplies, home improvement, home care, and others, 3M said.