UPDATE 1-KBR 2nd-quarter profit, revenue top estimates

Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:54pm EDT

July 25 (Reuters) - Engineering company KBR Inc posted higher-than-expected earnings on Thursday on improved margins and a lower tax rate, while nudging up the lower end of its forecast for full-year profit.

Chief Executive Bill Utt highlighted a 1.5 percentage-point improvement in job income margins over the past year, along with an 8 percent increase in job income.

Second-quarter profit was $90 million, or 61 cents per share, compared with $104 million, or 70 cents per share, in an especially strong quarter a year ago. Revenue fell 3 percent to just shy of $2 billion.

Analysts had expected 57 cents per share on revenue of $1.93 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The effective tax rate in the quarter was only 12 percent, whereas the company is expecting a tax rate of at least twice that in the second half of the year.

KBR also said it had revised its 2013 profit estimate range to between $2.55 and $2.90 per share, adding 10 cents to the bottom end.

Shares of KBR rose 5 cents in after-hours trading on Thursday to $33, having already gained an eighth in value since the start of May.

A couple walks along the rough surf during sunset at Oahu's North Shore, December 26, 2013. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

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