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Harte-Hanks 1Q Profit Cut In Half, Beats View

SAN ANTONIO (AP) ¿ Harte-Hanks Inc., a direct marketing and advertising company, on Tuesday reported a 48 percent decline in first-quarter profit after incurring higher-than-expected charges as revenue fell. But earnings beat expectations.

The company earned $7.1 million, or 11 cents per share, in the quarter, compared with $13.6 million, or 21 cents, in the same period a year earlier. Revenue was $217.7 million, down 19 percent from $268.5 million.

Harte-Hanks' quarterly profit exceeded the 6-cent-per-share forecast of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, but fell short of the $224.2 million revenue expected.

The San Antonio-based company said it booked $2.8 million in severance charges and $2.6 million in plant consolidation and circulation costs. Harte-Hanks closed a Florida production facility and reduced its work force in the first quarter.

"Our clients in direct marketing remain very cautious in their spending plans and are faced with decreased marketing budgets," Chief Executive Larry Franklin said in a statement.

Shares of Harte-Hanks rose $1.13, or 13.4 percent, to $9.60 in afternoon trading.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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