* 2nd-quarter loss per share $0.37 from continuing
* 2nd-quarter rev up 6 percent to $137 million
* 2nd-quarter expenses down 10 percent
Dec 6 H&R Block Inc, the biggest U.S.
tax preparer, reported a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss
as its cost-reduction measures continued to pay off.
The company has been realigning its focus to its core tax
preparing business after several years of losing customers to
do-it-yourself tax filing services like Intuit Inc's
It has cut jobs, shut stores and overhauled its management
this year to focus on the fast-growing digital tax preparation
Net loss from continuing operations for the second quarter
fell to $101 million, or 37 cents per share, from $123 million,
or 41 cents per share, a year earlier.
Total revenue rose 6 percent to $137 million, boosted by a
strong tax season in Australia.
Analysts on average were expecting the company to post loss
of 40 cents per share on revenue of $140.5 million, according to
Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Expenses fell 10 percent to $302.3 million in the quarter
H&R Block, incorporated in 1955 by brothers Henry and
Richard Bloch, is exploring strategic alternatives for its
banking operation to avoid costly oversight by the U.S. Federal
Reserve under the Dodd-Frank Act.
The second quarter is seasonally loss-making for tax
preparers. They earn most of their profits in the fiscal third
and fourth quarters when most people file their taxes.
Tax preparers set up their outlets in department stores
during tax season, hoping to benefit from the large number of
customers who flock into the stores.
The Kansas City, Missouri-based company said in September
that it will no longer operate in Sears Holdings Corp's
stores. It operates out of about 300 Walmart Stores and
expects to increase its presence in 2013.
Shares of H&R Block, which have risen about 12 percent in
the past three months, closed at $17.57 on Thursday on the New
York Stock Exchange.