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Harman International (HAR) earnings rose 8% for the first quarter of fiscal 2007 from a year ago on better automotive sales.

The Washington, D.C.-based car-stereo maker earned $56.6 million, or 85 cents a share, for the first quarter, compared with $53.97 million, or 79 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call were expecting 81 cents a share for the quarter.

First-quarter revenue rose 9% from a year ago to $825.54 million vs. analysts' expectation of $800.92 million.

The company is retaining its earnings guidance of $4.35 a share for fiscal 2007. Analysts expect earnings of $4.44 a share for the same period.

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Operating income for the quarter increased 11% to $86.9 million.

Automotive revenue for the first quarter was $601.0 million, an increase of 16% from a year ago. Professional sales increased 7% to $131.4 million. Consumer sales were $93.1 million compared with $111.4 million a year ago.

"We achieved record results during the first quarter of fiscal 2007. Automotive performed very well while continuing to make substantial investments in infotainment systems development. Professional's strong quarter is indicative of increasing market acceptance of the new products integrating the HiQnet protocol. First quarter results for the Consumer Group were below expectations. However, we expect the group to return to solid profitability in the second quarter," the company said.

Shares of the company closed up 82 cents, or 0.94%, at $88.27 Wednesday.

This story was created through a joint venture between TheStreet.com and IRIS.