Thomson Reuters Corp. (TRI:US), the provider of financial news and information, reported profit that beat analysts’ estimates after subscription revenue helped make up for a decrease in sales from trading transactions.
Excluding some items, third-quarter profit was 54 cents a share, the company said today in a statement. Analysts had estimated 48 cents on average, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Total revenue slid 6.9 percent to $3.22 billion.
“Third-quarter results met our expectations even as the market environment remained challenging,” James C. Smith, Thomson Reuters’s chief executive officer, said in the statement. “Our resilient subscription-based businesses performed well.”
The New York-based company, controlled by Chairman David Thomson through a family investment trust, continued to see improvements in its tax and legal business during a slump in sales of financial-data products. The slowdown in the U.S. and Europe has prompted many Wall Street firms to cut costs, resulting in sluggish sales.
The shares (TRI:US) fell 1.1 percent to $28.20 at the close in New York. The stock has gained 5.7 percent this year.
Third-quarter net income attributable to common shareholders climbed 25 percent to $462 million, or 56 cents a share, from $369 million, or 44 cents, a year earlier. The company also reaffirmed its 2012 forecast for revenue growth in the low single digits.
Thomson Reuters has focused on expanding newer businesses, including legal, tax and foreign-exchange services. Legal revenue rose 1 percent to $830 million in the period, while the tax and accounting business posted an 8 percent gain to $262 million.
Thomson Reuters also has shed some operations. It agreed to sell a health-care division to Veritas Capital for $1.25 billion in April and offloaded a smaller property-tax unit for an undisclosed sum in September. Revenue from ongoing businesses, when adjusting for currency fluctuations, rose 1 percent last quarter.
The company acquired FX Alliance Inc. in July for about $620 million, gaining access to more than 1,300 clients that use the platform to access foreign-exchange markets.
Bloomberg LP, the parent of Bloomberg News, competes with Thomson Reuters in selling financial and legal information and trading systems.
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