From: Reuters
Published January 29, 2008 07:56 AM

Lexmark profit beats expectation

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Printer maker Lexmark International Inc <LXK.N> reported on Tuesday a higher quarterly net profit and predicted better-than-expected first quarter earnings, sending shares up more than 10 percent.

The company, whose competitors include Hewlett-Packard Co <HPQ.N> and Canon Inc <7751.T>, reported fourth-quarter net income of $99.0 million, or $1.04 a share, versus $89.9 million, or 91 cents a share in the year-ago quarter.

Excluding items, Lexmark posted a fourth quarter profit of $1.29, handily beating Wall Street estimates of 58 cents per share, according to Reuters Research.

Quarterly revenue at the Lexington, Kentucky, company, fell to $1.31 billion from $1.37 billion.

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It forecast first-quarter earnings to be in the range of 66 cents to 76 cents per share.

Excluding restructuring charges, the company said it expects a first-quarter profit per share in the range of 80 cents to 90 cents, ahead of Wall Street estimates of 78 cents.

(Reporting by Ritsuko Ando and Kenneth Li)

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