May 2, 2018 / 11:12 AM / 2 months ago

UPDATE 1-Estee Lauder tops estimates, lifts earnings view on skin-care boost

(Adds details from results, background)

May 2 (Reuters) - Estee Lauder Cos Inc topped analysts' expectations for quarterly profit on Wednesday and raised its yearly earnings forecast, helped by stronger demand for skin care products under its La Mer and Clinique brands.

The cosmetics maker now expects full-year adjusted earnings of $4.38 to $4.42 per share, compared with an earlier forecast of $4.27 to $4.32 per share.

The New York City-based company is also benefiting from higher sales at duty-free stores and a booming skin-care products business in South Asia and China.

Estee Lauder said net earnings rose to $372 million or 99 cents per share in the third quarter ended March 31, from $298 million or 80 cents per share a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned $1.17 per share, topping analysts' average estimate of $1.07, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Sales rose 18 percent to $3.37 billion, also exceeding analysts' estimates, of $3.25 billion.

Estee also said on Wednesday that testing carried out in the third quarter related some of its product advertising claims had not met company standards, but added that the claims did not relate to the quality or safety of the products. (Reporting by Karina Dsouza in Bengaluru; Editing by Sai Sachin Ravikumar)

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