Xerox Corp. yesterday announced a 1985 fourth-quarter profit of $156 million ($1.49 a share), reversing a net loss of $12 million in the same period of 1984.

Sales of the company's reproduction equipment and information systems during the quarter totaled $2.52 billion, a 5 percent increase from the $2.4 billion for the year-earlier quarter. Fourth-quarter income was bolstered by a $42 million gain from the sale of six publishing companies, the company said.

For the full year, Xerox said its net earnings rose to $475 million ($4.44) from $290 million ($2.53) in 1984.

*Dun & Bradstreet Corp., the business information firm whose divisions include Moody's Investor Service and Neilsen Marketing Research, reported yesterday that earnings were up more than 15 percent for the final quarter and all of 1985.

D&B earned $94.71 million ($3.88 a share) in 1985, up from 15.1 percent from $255.9 million ($3.37) in 1984. In the final quarter, earnings rose 15.7 percent to $72.3 million (96 cents) from $62.6 million (83 cents) in the comparable period of 1984. Profits were records in both periods.

Revenue amounted to $2.8 billion in 1985, up from $2.4 billion in 1984, and $807.5 million in the fourth quarter, up from $658.96 million in the same period the previous year.

*Owens-Illinois Inc. yesterday reported earnings gains for the 1985 fourth quarter and year, primarily on increased sales of glass containers.

The Toledo company had net earnings of $41.3 million ($1.38 a share) on sales of $891.3 million during the fourth quarter. Last year's fourth-quarter earnings totaled $37.5 million ($1.26) on sales of $868 million.

For the year, Owens-Illinois reported income of $151.1 million ($5.23) on sales of $3.7 billion.

The company's other plastic businesses also improved, but Owens-Illinois continues to experience difficulties with its forest products and television products operations, he said.

*The Stanley Works has reported that its fourth-quarter and annual net earnings in 1985 increased from the previous year.

The tool-manufacturing company reported fourth-quarter net earnings of $25.7 million (93 cents a share) compared with $22.4 million (81 cents) a year earlier.

Sales for the fourth quarter increased to $322.4 million from $305.9 million in 1984.