Yum Brands posts 30 percent 4th-qtr profit rise

By the Associated Press | February 6, 2012 | 4:45 PM EST

File - This Nov. 22, 2011 file photo provided by Yum Brands, shows the Pizza Hut Big Dinner filled with two medium rectangular one-topping pizzas, eight wings and five breadsticks. Yum Brands releases quarterly financial results Monday, Feb. 6, 2012, after the market close.(AP Photo/Pizza Hut, File)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The owner of the Pizza Hut, Taco Bell and KFC chains says its fourth-quarter profit rose 30 percent, thanks to its fast-growing overseas operations and to a strong showing from Pizza Hut in the U.S.

Yum Brands Inc. said Monday that Taco Bell had another sluggish quarter in the U.S. The Mexican-style chain is struggling to regain momentum after publicity from a now-dropped lawsuit that questioned the beef content of its taco and burrito filling.

Yum, based in Louisville, Kentucky, earned $356 million, or 75 cents per share, for the quarter. That's compared to $274 million, or 56 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 15 percent to $4.1 billion.

Analysts expected profit of 74 cents per share on revenue of $4.04 billion.

The shares rose after hours.