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FILE- In this April 10, 2017, file photo, a FedEx envelope is placed into a dropbox in North Andover, Mass. FedEx Corp. reports earnings Tuesday, March 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

Tax reduction, higher rates and strength in its ground-shipping business helped boost FedEx's profit during a stellar holiday gift-shipping season.

The delivery company is also raising its forecast for earnings in the fiscal year that ends in May.

FedEx Corp. said Tuesday tit earned $2.07 billion in the December-through-February quarter, up from $562 million a year earlier.

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FILE- In this April 18, 2017, file photo, a FedEx cargo plane sits idle during the day at Richmond International Airport in Sandston, Va. FedEx Corp. reports earnings Tuesday, March 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

Adjusted to eliminate one-time benefits, the company's earnings of $3.72 handily beat the forecast of $3.08 per share from 11 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research.

The tax-cut bill passed in December was a major boost for the Memphis-

based company. FedEx reaped $1.5 billion in tax benefits, the biggest piece being a $1.15 billion gain because of lower deferred tax liability.

Revenue rose to

$16.53 billion, beating an average forecast of $16.18 from the analysts surveyed by Zacks.

FedEx raised its forecast of full-year earnings to between $15 and $15.40 per share excluding items related to tax benefits, pensions, and the cost of integrating Dutch delivery company TNT Express, which FedEx bought in 2016. That's up from a previous forecast of a range between $12.70 to $13.30 a share.

Before the results, FedEx shares closed up $2.38 at $251.99. In about an hour of after-session trading they slipped $4 to $247.99. At market closing, the shares had gained 31 percent in the past 12 months.

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