UPDATE 2-Itron profit tops Wall Street view, shares rise
* Q2 EPS ex-items of $1.20 vs Wall St view of $1.04
* Q2 rev $612 mln vs $571 mln Wall St estimate
* Shares up more than 6 percent (Updates share activity, adds 2011 forecast, background, changes dateline pvs NEW YORK)
LOS ANGELES, July 27 (Reuters) - Itron (ITRI.O) posted second-quarter earnings and revenue that topped Wall Street estimates on strong growth in its gas and water smart meter business outside the United States.
The company's shares rose more than 6 percent following the announcement.
Itron's advanced electric meters allow households to monitor their usage more closely while also sending data back to their power providers.
"I am very pleased with the performance of Itron International," Itron Chief Executive Malcolm Unsworth said in a statement. "Our smart metering projects in North America are continuing to drive revenue, but one of the keys to our future growth is to continue to introduce innovative technologies in other parts of the world and to streamline our operations to improve profitability and our time to market."
Net income rose to $34.4 million, or 84 cents per share, versus $25.3 million, or 61 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter.
Excluding one-time items, earnings per share of $1.20 topped the $1.04 that analysts had on average forecast, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue in the quarter rose 8 percent to $612 million, exceeding analysts' consensus estimates of $571 million. Excluding the impact of a weak dollar, revenue rose just 2 percent from the prior year, Itron said.
For the full year, Itron expects revenue of $2.3 billion to $2.4 billion and earnings before items of $4.20 to $4.60 per share.
Analysts, on average, are expecting 2011 revenue of $2.3 billion and earnings per share of $4.21, excluding items.
Shares of Itron rose in post-market trading to $50.10 after closing 4.4 percent lower at $47.08.
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