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PepsiCo 4Q performance tops Street's view; announces $5B saving program, hikes annual dividend


PURCHASE, N.Y. - Soda and snack maker PepsiCo says its fourth-quarter net income climbed 5 per cent, helped by higher prices and improved volumes.

The company, which owns Gatorade, Quaker Oats and other products, also announced a five-year, $5 billion cost-saving program. It also plans to increase cash returns to shareholders in 2014 to $8.7 billion through higher dividends and stock buybacks.

PepsiCo Inc.'s annual dividend will be raised by 15 per cent, starting in June.

For the period ended Dec. 28, the company earned $1.74 billion, or $1.12 per share. That compares with $1.66 billion, or $1.06 per share, a year ago.

Excluding charges and other items, earnings were $1.05 per share. Analysts expected $1 per share.

Revenue rose 1 per cent to $20.12 billion. Analysts expected revenue of $20.1 billion.