Young & Rubicam (YNR) shares rebounded Thursday after the big advertising agency said first quarter earnings jumped 27% and topped Wall Street estimates by 2 cents.
New York-based Y&R, which is reportedly in merger talks with both
and French advertising holding company
, said it earned 30 cents per diluted share, or $25.1 million, vs. 24 cents, or $19.7 million, a year earlier. Analysts surveyed by
First Call/Thomson Financial
had expected 28 cents per share.
Y&R shares surged 3, or 6%, to close at 52 7/8 Thursday. On Wednesday, Y&R
fell 4% after a published report said the agency was in talks to acquire direct marketing firm
for more than $2 billion.
Since then, WPP Group has confirmed that it has held talks with Y&R, and Publicis' name has emerged in published reports as the second suitor.
Overall, Y&R reported first quarter revenue of $448.3 million, a 16.8% increase over the same period a year ago. The agency added $440 million in new business for the quarter, up 80% over the same quarter last year.