(Bloomberg) — Allstate Corp., the largest U.S. publicly traded seller of auto and home insurance, said it will repurchase as much as $3 billion of its stock as fourth-quarter profit exceeded analysts' estimates.

Operating income, which excludes some investment results, was $1.72 a share, beating the $1.69 average estimate of 22 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Net income declined to $795 million, or $1.86 a share, from $810 million, or $1.76, a year earlier when there were more shares outstanding, Northbrook, Illinois-based Allstate said Wednesday in a statement.

Chief Executive Officer Tom Wilson returned $2.8 billion to shareholders in 2014 with dividends and buybacks, Allstate said. Allstate said Wednesday that it raised the quarterly dividend 7% to 30 cents a share. The new $3 billion repurchase program is set to be completed by July 2016.

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