Apollo Soars as Profit Forecast Beats Estimates

Tickers in this article: APOL

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Apollo Group shares were soaring Monday, trading above their 50-day moving average even after the for-profit education company reported a decline in student enrollments.

Apollo was up 8.3% to $18.46, a premium to its 50-day moving average of $18.10 as the Phoenix-based company reaffirmed its fiscal 2013 outlook. Apollo's forecast, excluding one-time items, calls for net revenue of $3.65 billion to $3.75 billion on operating income of $500 million to $550 million. Analysts, on average, were expecting current-year revenues of $3.73 billion.

The projection comes despite higher marketing costs and lower enrollment, illustrated by a 15.5% decrease at the University of Phoenix and 20.1% decline in new-degree graduations.

Trading volumes were unusually high, with 7.77 million shares changing hands, about three times its average daily trading volume.

The University of Phoenix owner said its restructuring plans should help the company cut annual operating expenses by at least $350 million by fiscal 2014, which may result in $50 million more in savings than it previously expected.

Apollo's income dropped 78% to $13.5 million in the second quarter, or 12 cents a share, though adjusted earnings came in at 34 cents a share on revenue of $834.4 million, which blew past the average analyst estimate of 18 cents a share on revenue of $822.8 million, according to Thomson One Analytics.

Apollo shares have slid more than 56% over the past year.

Written by Andrea Tse in New York

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