Eaton Corporation, PLC (NYSE:ETN) announced its fourth-quarter results before the opening bell today. The company reported operating earnings of $516 million or $1.08 per share. Those results were up 63% and 32%, respectively, over last year's fourth quarter. While the company beat analyst earnings expectations by $0.02, revenue of $5.52 billion did miss estimates by $30 million, though sales were up 28% from 2012.
The acquisition of Cooper Industries grew sales in the company's electrical products division by 57% over the prior year. Meanwhile, sales from electrical services and custom-designed electrical systems for buildings grew 38% over the prior year. Growth was lower at Eaton's hydraulics unit as well as its aerospace segment, as sales in those divisions only increased 3%. Finally, sales in Eaton's vehicle segment were up 7% over last year.
Overall, Eaton's core sales growth was up 4% on the quarter. That was the company's strongest quarter of core sales growth in 2013. On top of that the company generated record cash flow of $872 million in the quarter. That's up 27% over the prior year's fourth quarter.
Looking ahead, Eaton expects to see its markets grow 3% in 2014. That should result in operating earnings growth per share of 14%, which would set a new record for operating earnings again in 2014.
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