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Casey's General Store, Inc. (CASY) - Get Casey's General Stores, Inc. Report  , the operator of convenience stores and gasoline stations, reported less income than in previous quarters, but strong earnings have investors high on the stock.

The company rose $3.39, or 2.58%, to $134.68 a share in Tuesday trading after it substantially beat consensus EPS estimates. The Iowa-based chain reported earnings of $1.13 a share compared to the estimate of 65 cents each.

"We are optimistic about the direction we are moving the Company," CEO Terry Handley said. "Effective operating expense control, combined with a favorable fuel margin environment and continued focus on strategic pricing produced strong diluted earnings-per-share growth."

Company executives declared a dividend of 29 cents per share for the quarter.

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Its revenue came in lower than expected, reporting $2.05 billion during the third quarter compared to the $2.18 billion analysts anticipated. 

Retail fuel sales for the quarter decreased by roughly 5% due to lower average gas prices, according to the company's SEC filing. The number of gallon sales increased during the quarter by 2.7% from the same quarter a year ago.

Net income decreased to $41.8 million in the quarter from the previous period's $192.9 million, but that number was inflated because of the benefits from the Tax Reform Act. 

Casey's has underperformed compared to the S&P 500 since the beginning of the year, gaining just 5.2% against the index's 11.5% increase.

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