The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. on Wednesday morning reported record first-quarter earnings of $224 million, or 83 cents per share, after posting a loss for the same time period a year ago.

“Our strong first quarter provides solid momentum as we start 2015,” Richard J. Kramer, chairman and chief executive officer, said in a news release. “We overcame significant foreign currency headwinds and delivered record earnings led by North America, which achieved its fourth consecutive quarter of segment operating income margin more than 10 percent.”

Kramer said that “volume growth was driven by market demand for our award-winning, high-value-added products and gives us increased confidence in our outlook for the remainder of the year.”

The Akron-based tire company last year reported a $58 million loss for the first quarter of 2014.

This quarter’s results exceeded Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 45 cents per share.

Goodyear posted revenue of $4.02 billion in the period, which fell short of Wall Street forecasts. Four analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $4.07 billion.

In a conference call with analysts, Kramer said the company’s North American division led the way by setting a first-quarter earnings record of $198 million, up 27 percent from the prior year. The improvement was driven primarily by lower raw material costs and higher tire unit volume.

Goodyear shares rose $1.13 to $28.34 at the stock market’s closing bell Wednesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. Betty Lin-Fisher can be reached at 330-996-3724 or Follow her @blinfisherABJ on Twitter or and see all her stories at