Medtronic: Picking Up the Pace

Shares of this medical devices company surged after an impressive earnings report. And new products coming down the pike could provide momentum to its businesses.

A surprisingly good earnings report for Medtronic Inc. gave the stock a nice jolt and promised sustainable momentum going forward -- sort of the financial equivalent of the medical miracles that the company's defibrillators perform on heart patients every day.

Earnings per share of 66 cents for Medtronic's fourth fiscal quarter were up 8% from the same period a year earlier and eclipsed Wall Street's expectation of 62 cents by a healthy margin. The Minneapolis-based company also reported that quarterly revenues of $3.28 billion were up 7% from the year-earlier period. That was slightly more than analysts expected. In its May 22 release, the company said that revenues for the full fiscal year, which ended April 27, climbed 9%, to $12.2 billion, and that earnings jumped 15%, to $2.41 a share.

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Anne Kates Smith
Executive Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Anne Kates Smith brings Wall Street to Main Street, with decades of experience covering investments and personal finance for real people trying to navigate fast-changing markets, preserve financial security or plan for the future. She oversees the magazine's investing coverage,  authors Kiplinger’s biannual stock-market outlooks and writes the "Your Mind and Your Money" column, a take on behavioral finance and how investors can get out of their own way. Smith began her journalism career as a writer and columnist for USA Today. Prior to joining Kiplinger, she was a senior editor at U.S. News & World Report and a contributing columnist for TheStreet. Smith is a graduate of St. John's College in Annapolis, Md., the third-oldest college in America.