MILAN, Italy (Nov. 13)—Continued tire division growth in the third quarter helped push Pirelli S.p.A.'s nine-month pretax income up 14.7 percent and prompted Pirelli management to predict a "significant improvement" in fiscal 2003 operating income over 2002. Pirelli reported tire division sales rose 11.1 percent in the third quarter, pushing nine-month sales up 4.4 percent to $2.59 billion. Disregarding the negative exchange rate effects, sales would have been up more than 14 percent, Pirelli said, on a combination of increased volume—particularly in winter and performance tires—improved prices and a better product mix. Tire division operating income was up 16 percent over 2002 to $200 million, or 7.7 percent of sales. Net income was up 51.6 percent to $108.1 million. Overall, Pirelli's pretax earnings stood at $538 million. Sales fell 2 percent to $5.67 billion
Tire unit's performance pushes Pirelli's pretax income up for nine-month period
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