Brinker Profits Top Estimates

Revenue gains came from increase in comparable store sales and restaurant capacity growth.
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Dallas-based

Brinker International

(EAT) - Get Report

, a restaurant chain operator, said second-quarter earnings rose 4% from a year ago, topping estimates.

The company earned $42.8 million, or 49 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $41.1 million, or 44 cents a share, last year. Adjusted for a restructuring charge and stock-options expense, Brinker earned 56 cents a share in the quarter, beating estimates by a dime.

Revenue for the quarter was $1 billion, an increase of 10.9% over last year and matching estimates. Same-store sales rose 2.2% while restaurant capacity growth was 7.1%.

Brinker said its initial estimate for third quarter of fiscal 2006 earnings from continuing operations is 57 cents to 59 cents a share, including equity-based compensation expense of approximately 6 cents. The Thomson First Call consensus estimate is 56 cents a share.

For the full year of fiscal 2006, Brinker estimates earnings from continuing operations of $2.09 to $2.14 a share, which includes incremental equity-based compensation expense for the year of roughly 27 cents to 29 cents a share. Analysts are forecasting a profit of $2.11 a share.

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