said its first-quarter earnings rose 1.9%.
The company earned $50 million, or 62 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with $49 million, or 60 cents a share, a year ago. Including stock options expense of 4 cents a share but excluding restructuring charges of 4 cents a share, the company earned 66 cents a share in the quarter. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting earnings of 64 cents a share in the most recent quarter.
First-quarter revenue rose 5.9% to $431 million with stronger European internal growth more than offsetting a stronger U.S. dollar.
The company reaffirmed its earnings guidance of $2.80 a share to $2.85 a share for 2006. This includes stock options expense but excludes restructuring charges. Analysts are expecting earnings of $2.81 a share.
Net sales, excluding precious metal content, increased 3.9% to $383.8 million.
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