UPDATE 2-Ingersoll-Rand 1st-quarter profit tops forecasts


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NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - Ingersoll-Rand Co , which is in the process of buying heating and air conditioning company Trane Inc , reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, driven by international demand and higher parts, service and rental sales.

A lower-than-expected tax rate was a key factor in the diversified manufacturer's earnings beat, Bear Stearns analyst Ann Duignan said.

"There were concerns that Ingersoll would have to lower its outlook based on Trane's outlook yesterday," Duignan wrote in a research note. "(The) market may be relieved that this is not the case, however, lower tax rate is the driver."

Net earnings slipped to $181.6 million, or 66 cents per share, from $217.5 million, or 70 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding costs related to discontinued operations, Ingersoll earned 77 cents per share, which was 4 cents ahead of forecasts, according to Reuters Estimates.

Revenue rose 9.5 percent to $2.16 billion compared with Wall Street forecast of $2.1 billion. Ingersoll's U.S. revenues increased slightly while international sales jumped 21 percent. The weak U.S. dollar added 4 percentage points to the revenue gain.

Ingersoll said it is in the final stages of completing its purchase of Trane. Assuming a May 31 completion date, Ingersoll said it expects full-year earnings from continuing operations of $3.80 to $3.90 per share, not including one-time charges.

Analysts, on average, expect Ingersoll to earn $3.78 per share this year.

For more on Trane's results on Tuesday, see [ID:nN29293610] (Reporting by Nick Zieminski; Editing by Mark Porter and Steve Orlofsky)



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