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3M cuts 2012 guidance, citing "economic realities"

MINNEAPOLIS 3M Co. (MMM) is reducing its profit expectations for this year because of what it calls "current economic realities."

3M makes everything from Post-it notes and Scotch tape to roofing granules, coatings for LCD screens, and traffic sign coatings. The variety of its businesses and its worldwide footprint make it an economic bellwether.

It now expects to earn $6.27 to $6.35 per share for the year, down from a previous expectation of $6.35 to $6.50. Revenue will be roughly flat. Analysts had been expecting a profit of $6.40 per share, according to a survey by FactSet.

For the most recent quarter, 3M's net income rose 6.7 percent to $1.16 billion. Revenue fell slightly to $7.5 billion.

The profit of $1.65 per share matched analyst expectations, although 3M's revenue fell short.