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Shares of Angie's List, ITT skyrocket after reports

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In the heart of a mediocre earnings season for public companies, Indianapolis-based firms Angie’s List Inc. and ITT Educational Services Inc. on Thursday rode better-than-expected numbers for the first quarter to the top of the stock ticker.

Shares of Angie’s List rocketed 28.9 percent, to $25.92 each, during trading on Thursday, after its first-quarter financial report released late Wednesday trumpeted a 68-percent increase in revenue. Even though the online consumer-review service turned in another money-losing quarter, it brought in $52.2 million in revenue, compared with $31.1 million in the same quarter of last year.

ITT Educational, which has been on a steady decline since a high of $125-plus in 2009, bounced back in a big way on Thursday as shares rose 30.5 percent, to $20. The for-profit education firm had recently hit a 52-week low of $11.69 per share.

The firm actually saw profit and revenue drop dramatically in the first quarter as student enrollment continued to decline. But its performance still exceeded the expectations of analysts, leading to a rebound in its shares.

The Carmel-based company said Thursday morning that it earned $31.1 million, or $1.33 per share, in the latest quarter, down 49 percent from the same period a year earlier. Revenue fell nearly 16 percent, to $287.7 million.

The boost in Angie’s List shares also came under unlikely conditions: a loss of $7.9 million, or 14 cents per share, for the three months ended March 31.  Again, however, the firm benefitted from even worse expectations, as analysts predicted a loss of 17 cents per share.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose as much as 91 points on Thursday before giving up most of that gain late in the day. Investors were underwhelmed by what turned out to be a mixed bag on earnings. The Dow closed up 24.50 points, or 0.2 percent, to 14,700.80. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 6.37 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,585.16.

 

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