Accounting software maker

Intuit

(INTU) - Get Report

posted first-quarter results Wednesday that surpassed both its own and Wall Street estimates, but expects second-quarter results to miss analysts' expectations.

Shares recently fell to $43.10 in after-hours trading following a regular-session close of $43.55.

Under generally accepted accounting principles, Mountain View, Calif.-based Intuit reported a first-quarter loss of $46.1 million, or 24 cents a share. That was an improvement from a net loss of $54 million, or 27 cents a share, in the same period a year earlier.

Excluding charges, Intuit posted a pro forma net loss of $43.3 million, or 23 cents a share, in the first quarter, down from a pro forma net loss of $47.6 million, or 24 cents a share, a year earlier. That was better than the consensus estimate gathered by Thomson First Call pegging the first-quarter net loss at 27 cents a share, and also better than the company's forecast calling for a pro forma loss of 25 cents to 29 cents a share.

First-quarter revenue climbed 11% from a year ago to $266 million, higher than the consensus estimate of $257.9 million and the company's guidance calling for a range of $251 million to $263 million.

Intuit, the maker of TurboTax and Quicken accounting software, said it expects second-quarter revenue to range from $625 million and $645 million and pro forma earnings to range from 72 cents to 77 cents a share. That's lower than the consensus estimate calling for revenue of $651.4 million and pro forma earnings of 85 cents a share.

The company reaffirmed fiscal 2005 guidance, which calls for revenue of $1.97 billion to $2.02 billion, or annual growth of 6% to 9%; pro forma earnings of $1.93 to $2.01 a share; and GAAP earnings of $1.82 to $1.90 a share. Analyst estimates currently forecast Intuit will earn $1.96 a share on $2.01 billion in revenue in fiscal 2005.

Intuit also reaffirmed third-quarter revenue guidance, ranging from $780 million to $810 million, and provided its third-quarter earnings outlook for the first time, targeting a range of $1.46 to $1.51 a share on a pro forma basis and $1.43 to $1.48 per share on a GAAP basis. Analysts were projecting Intuit would earn $1.43 a share on $799.5 million in revenue in the third quarter.

For the fourth quarter, which ends July 31, Intuit expects revenue to range from $285 million to $305 million; a pro forma loss to range from 4 cents to 8 cents a share; and a GAAP loss to range from 7 cents to 11 cents a share. Analysts were projecting Intuit would lose 6 cents a share on $296 million in revenue in the fourth quarter.