updated 6/27/2005 9:21:20 AM ET 2005-06-27T13:21:20

Nike Inc., the world's largest shoemaker, said Monday its fourth-quarter profit grew 15 percent, beating Wall Street expectations, as footwear sales rose across the globe.

Quarterly earnings rose to $349.5 million, or $1.30 per share, from $305 million, or $1.13 per share, in the year-ago period. On average, analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial were looking for a profit of $1.27 per share.

Revenue totaled $3.72 billion, up 7 percent from $3.49 billion a year earlier and topping the mean analyst estimate of $3.69 billion.

Improved sales of shoes and equipment lifted U.S. revenue by 3 percent to $1.33 billion, while European sales climbed 4 percent to $1.13 billion. Sales surged 19 percent to $535 million in the Asia-Pacific region and 20 percent in the Americas, Nike said.

Earnings for the fiscal year ended May 31 swelled 28 percent to $1.21 billion, or $4.48 per share, from $945.6 million, or $3.51 per share, in 2004. Revenue of $13.74 billion was 12 percent higher than the $12.25 billion recorded the year before.

Analysts were looking for full-year income of $4.46 per share on $13.71 billion in sales.

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