ITT Educational posts profit, raises forecast

Profit at ITT Educational Services Inc. soared in the second quarter as enrollment at the Carmel-based operator of for-profit colleges continued to swell.

ITT Educational said Thursday that it earned a profit of $96 million, up more than 35 percent from the same quarter a year ago.

The company earned $2.78 per share, beating analysts’ expectations of $2.68 per share.

As a result, ITT Educational now expects to produce profit of $11 to $11.35 per share during the full year, up from a previous forecasted range of $10.50 to $11.25.

Joblessness in the U.S. economy continues to help drive students to ITT’s schools to learn new skills. New student enrollment shot up 10 percent in the quarter, compared with the same period a year ago, to a total of 21,673. The company’s schools have total enrollment now of 84,695, an increase of 21 percent from the same time a year ago.

Quarterly revenue climbed 26 percent, to $401.8 million.

Loan defaults increased slightly, however. The company’s percentage of bad debt rose to 5.8 percent in the second quarter, up from 5.4 percent a year ago.

ITT shares opened Thursday at $88.66 each, down from a 52-week high of $119.20 reached in April. The stock dipped to $78.59 earlier this month before beginning to rebound.

The company has 121 campuses in 38 states.

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