Accenture Higher on Outlook

Accenture's ( ACN) shares were higher ahead of the bell Tuesday after the company reported a jump in second-quarter revenue and said revenue in the current quarter should eclipse analysts' estimates.

The consulting company earned $123.1 million, or 22 cents a share, in the most recent quarter compared with earnings of $118.7 million, or 25 cents a share, last year. Net revenue rose 17% to $3.30 billion, with about half the increase coming from favorable currency translations.

Accenture recorded a pretax restructuring charge of $107 million in the latest quarter, reducing after-tax income by 7 cents a share. Analysts, who exclude the charge, were forecasting earnings of 25 cents a share in the quarter and revenue of $3.17 billion.

The shares were recently up 31 cents, or 1.3%, to $24.35 on the Instinet premarket session.

For the current third quarter, Accenture said it expects to earn 30 cents a share on net revenue of $3.40 billion to $3.55 billion. Analysts surveyed by Thomson One Analytics had been forecasting earnings of 30 cents a share on revenue of $3.38 billion.

For the current fiscal year, Accenture expects GAAP earnings of $1.13 to $1.15 a share on net revenue growth of 11% to 14%. Analysts surveyed by Thomson One Analytics were forecasting earnings of $1.11 a share on revenue of $13.1 billion.

The company, which also announced Tuesday that CEO Joe Forehand would leave the post in September while remaining chairman, said progress occurred in the current quarter despite a continuing shift in revenue toward its lower-margin outsourcing business, as well as lingering pricing pressures.

"At $7.65 billion, new bookings in our second quarter were our highest quarterly bookings ever, with $2.89 billion in consulting bookings and $4.76 billion in outsourcing bookings, positioning us for further growth," Accenture said.

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