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What: Shares of Goodyear Tire & Rubber (NASDAQ:GT) were burning rubber today, gaining as much as 13% on a strong fourth-quarter earnings report. 

So what: The tire manufacturer posted a per-share profit of $0.74, up from $0.39 a year ago and better than an expected $0.63, even though sales fell 5% to $4.8 billion, below expectations at $4.95 billion. Tire-unit volumes were up $64 million, or 2%, but its other divisions fell $176 million on lower third-party chemical sales and unfavorable foreign currency translation. CEO RIchard Kramer said in a press release the company is "seeing strong growth in value-added segments we are targeting," and that its pension obligations are now fully funded.

Now what: Goodyear continues to ride the broad auto recovery wave pushing industry stocks up; shares of the tire maker have more than doubled since last spring. Analysts expect more modest growth in the coming year, but the stock continues to look like a solid value play with a forward P/E near 10. Throw in a respected brand name, recovering auto sales, and a string of solid earnings beats, and I'd expect the stock to keep chugging higher. 

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