(By Balaseshan) Resources Connection Inc. (NASDAQ:RECN), a multinational professional services firm, reported an increase in fourth quarter earnings helped by higher gross margin and lower costs. Earnings exceeded Wall Street's expectations, sending its shares up 2.56% in aftermarket.
Quarterly earnings were $8.9 million or $0.21 per share, up from $5.4 million or $0.12 per share last year.
Revenue declined slightly to $145.51 million from $145.70 million.
Analysts had expected a profit of $0.15 per share on revenue of $148.65 million.
Revenues in the U.S. were up 4.6% quarter-over-quarter and 3.8% sequentially, while international revenues decreased 11.7% quarter-over-quarter and 4.4% sequentially (7.4% quarter-over-quarter and 4.4% sequentially on a constant dollar basis).
Gross margin for the quarter increased 210 basis points to 40.2%.
Operating Chief Tony Cherbak said while the uncertain global economic environment constrained its growth, the company's fourth quarter results demonstrates its ongoing efforts to improve financial metrics.
During the fourth quarter, the company purchased 534,000 shares of common stock for $7.0 million. On June 21, the company paid its quarterly dividend of $2.1 million to shareholders, representing a dividend of $0.05 per share.
RECN ended Thursday's regular session down 2.42% at $11.70. The stock has been trading between $8.26 and $14.49 for the past 52 weeks.