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Steinway posts stronger 1Q profit as costs fall

Piano maker Steinway Musical Instruments Inc. on Monday reported a 79 percent jump in first-quarter net income, helped by cost cuts.

The company earned $1.8 million, or 17 cents per share, for the three-month period that ended on March 31. That compares with net income of $1 million, or 12 cents per share, during the same period last year.

Net revenue slipped 2 percent to $68.5 million from $70 million as sales in the company's piano segment climbed 5 percent to $39 million but sales of band instruments fell 10 percent to $29 million.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected the instrument maker to earn 3 cents per share with net revenue of $69.2 million.

Steinway, based in Waltham, Mass., said its band division has seen a steady improvement in customer orders and it expects revenue to improve over the next two quarters as deliveries accelerate. The company said its expects its piano business to remain challenging as consumer demand continues to be weak in most Steinway markets and market share gains haven't been enough to offset anemic industry demand.

Its shares rose 86 cents, or 4.8 percent, to $18.85 in afternoon trading.