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International Game Tech's 3Q Net Drops 5.6%; View Raised Again

DOW JONES NEWSWIRES International Game Technology (IGT) reported Tuesday its fiscal third-quarter profit slipped 5.6% from a year-earlier result that had been bolstered by tax gains, while core earnings rose faster than expected on higher product sales. The slot-machine maker also raised its full-year earnings outlook for the second time, calling for an adjusted profit from continuing operations of between 89 cents and 93 cents a share, up from its April forecast of 84 cents to 90 cents. Shares jumped 4.6% to $18.92 after hours. The stock only had gained 2.3% this year through Tuesday's close, underperforming the broader market. International Game has posted improving core results over the past year as gambling activity rebounds in the wake of the recession. A ruling earlier this month from Illinois Supreme Court cleared the way for more video-gaming machines at bars and restaurants in the state, further improving the company's growth prospects. "Our third quarter results further demonstrate the positive momentum generated by our new games, platforms and internal process improvements," Chief Executive Patti Hart said. The company last month authorized a buyback of up to $500 million in common stock, joining a growing list of companies opting to reward shareholders by tapping into cash stockpiles. For the quarter ended June 30, International Game reported a profit of $86.9 million, or 29 cents a share, down from $92.1 million, or 31 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding prior-year tax gains and other items, earnings from continuing operations rose to 26 cents from 21 cents. Revenue grew 3% to $489 million. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a 22-cent per-share profit on revenue of $487 million. Revenue from gaming operations--which include machines that the company places in casinos and shares revenue with the operator--edged down 0.6%, while product sales of machines that the company sells outright climbed 7.6%. -By Drew FitzGerald, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2909;

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