Accenture First-Quarter Earnings Climb

Accenture , a management and technology consulting company, on Wednesday reported a more than 32% jump in fiscal first-quarter net income and a nearly 14% increase in sales, both surpassing Wall Street's expectations.

Quarterly net income of $284.2 million, or 46 cents a share, compared with $214.9 million, or 36 cents a share, last year. Net sales rose to $4.75 billion from $4.17 billion last year.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial, on average, expected profit of 42 cents a share on sales of $4.51 billion.

The company said the increased revenue was driven by top-line performance from its financial services, products and resources operating groups. Consulting and outsourcing net revenue also had double-digit increases, and new bookings of $5.5 billion were comprised of $3 billion from consulting and $2.5 billion from outsourcing.

Looking ahead, Accenture said it expects net sales for the second quarter to be between $4.6 billion and $4.8 billion, above Wall Street estimates of $4.49 billion.

For the full fiscal year, Accenture raised its profit outlook by 3 cents a share to between $1.80 and $1.85 a share. Analysts forecast earnings of $1.83 a share, according to a Thomson poll.

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