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Pearson Posts Strong Earnings, Upgrades Dividend, Outlook Upbeat

By Lilly Vitorovich Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES LONDON -(Dow Jones)- Publisher Pearson PLC (PSON.LN) Monday reported market-beating earnings and sales for 2009 and increased its dividend by 5%, buoyed by its extensive education operations in the U.S., digital learning and the strength of the dollar against the sterling, and was upbeat about its prospects. Pearson said it expects "to produce another year of underlying profit growth, helped by the overall resilience of our company and good growth prospects for our businesses in digital, services and emerging markets." Pearson publishes the Financial Times newspaper and Penguin books, but is dominated by its huge education division with imprints including FT Prentice Hall, Longman and York Notes. Adjusted earnings per share, which excludes intangibles such as goodwill, rose 13% to 65.4 pence for the year ended Dec. 31--ahead of the group's revised guidance in January of 63.5 pence. That compares with 57.7 pence a piece a year earlier. Pearson declared a final dividend of 23.3 pence a share, taking the total for 2009 to 35.5 pence. That compares with 33.8 pence in 2008. Pearson shares closed at 912 pence Friday, valuing the group at GBP7.40 billion. The stock has risen 39% over the past 12 months, underpinned by the strong performance of its education operations. -By Lilly Vitorovich, Dow Jones Newswires; 44-0-207 842 9290;

Stock News for Interactive Data (IDC)
07/26/201002:51:30Pearson Upgrades Outlook For 2010 After Strong First Half
05/10/201009:56:13Interactive Data 1Q Profit Falls 7.6%; Revenue Increases
05/04/201010:03:21MARKET SNAPSHOT: Euro-zone Fears Rattle U.S. Stocks; Pfizer Climbs
05/04/201004:24:15Pearson Agrees To Sell Interactive Data Stake For Around $2 Billion
05/04/201004:09:26Pearson Sells 61% Stake In Interactive Data For $33.86/Share
04/30/201003:22:44CORRECT: Pearson 1Q Revenue Up 7%; Sees Profit Growth
04/30/201002:52:22Pearson 1Q Revenue Up 7%; Sees Profit Growth
04/12/201014:16:32Sale Of Pearson's IDC Unit Edges Toward Next Round - Sources
03/29/201019:39:14KKR, CVC Team Up To Bid For Pearson's IDC - Source
03/24/201015:14:31Apax Partners Out Of Auction For Pearson's IDC -Source
03/01/201013:27:35Pearson Short-Lists 4 Bids In 2nd Round Of IDC Sale - Sources
03/01/201002:52:01Pearson Posts Strong Earnings, Upgrades Dividend, Outlook Upbeat
02/19/201010:22:16Pearson's IDC Sale Set To Move Into Second Round - Sources
01/15/201003:06:06Pearson Says IDC Is Reviewing Options

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