Encore Capital stock soars on better-than-expected Q4 results

Tue Feb 9, 2010 10:25am EST

Feb 9 (Reuters) - Shares of Encore Capital Group Inc (ECPG.O) rose as much as 19 percent on Tuesday, a day after the debt collector posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit, driven by higher collections.

For the latest fourth quarter, net income was $8.4 million, or 34 cents a share, compared with a net loss of $2.1 million, or 9 cents a share.

Analysts on average were expecting earnings of 32 cents a share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Revenue rose 57 percent to $81.6 million, while gross collections rose to $124.5 million from $94.4 million.

Debt collection companies buy troubled consumer debt portfolios sold by banks and other institutions and then aggressively pursue at least partial repayment from borrowers, badgering them via phone calls, text messages and emails.

The company said on Monday it entered into a new $327.5 million, three-year revolving credit facility that expires in May 2013, replacing its pre-existing $335 million agreement scheduled to expire in May 2010.

The new facility would allow the company to get an increase of up to $100 million, not to exceed a total facility of $427.5 million, it had said.

Shares of the company were up about 19 percent at $17.39 in early morning trade on Nasdaq. They touched a high of $17.50 earlier in the session. (Reporting by Abhinav Sharma in Bangalore; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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