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MasterCard 3rd quarter profit up 14% on higher card use

NEW YORK (AP) — MasterCard said its third-quarter profit rose 14 percent as it got a boost from overseas growth and processed more payments.

The payments network, based in Purchase, N.Y., on Thursday said its net income rose to $879 million, or $7.27 per share, for the three months ended Sept. 30. That compared with $772 million, or $6.17 per share, last year.

Revenue rose 16 percent to $2.22 billion, from $1.92 billion in the 2012 third quarter.

The company's earnings were boosted by its overseas business. Excluding the U.S., the amount people spent using MasterCard-branded cards rose almost 19 percent on a local-currency basis. In the U.S., spending rose close to 10 percent.

MasterCard Inc.'s results beat analysts' average expectations compiled by FactSet for profit of $6.94 per share, on revenue of $2.14 billion.

The company's stock rose $8.19 to $733.87 in pre-market trading. The stock has advanced 48 percent this year, ending Wednesday's regular session at $725.68..

The upbeat results contrasted with Visa's results, which were released late Wednesday.

Visa, the world's largest processor of debit and credit card payments, said that its quarterly earnings fell 28 percent, as it set aside money for taxes and said it was making plans based on a slow recovery for the U.S. economy.

Growth in the number of U.S. transactions slowed from August into September and showed constrained consumer spending, Visa's Chief Financial Officer Byron Pollitt said on a conference call.
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