ITT Educational Services Inc.'s (ESI) fourth-quarter profit rose 4.1% as revenue climbed more than expected but new-student enrollment declined again.
For-profit educators such as ITT Educational--which operates its namesake technical schools and offers degrees in fields such as electronics, information technology and industrial design--have seen earnings soar as unemployment hovers at an elevated level. ITT said enrollment growth slipped in the third quarter.
For the fourth quarter, New-student enrollment decreased 9.4%, though total student enrollment was up 4.9% to 84,686 from a year earlier. Revenue per student fell 1.4%.
ITT Educational and its peers are facing new regulatory hurdles as the U.S. Department of Education prepares to implement a series of rules related to recruiter compensation, state authorization of programs and a number of other topics.
Last week, Apollo Group Inc. (APOL) reported its fiscal first-quarter earnings fell as the owner of the University of Phoenix and other for-profit schools posted a sharp drop in new students.
For the latest quarter, ITT Educational reported a profit of $97.5 million, or $3.14 a share, up from $93.6 million, or $2.56 a share, a year earlier. Revenue improved 9.5% to $410.1 million.
Analysts estimated earnings of $3.10 on revenue of $407 million, according to a poll by Thomson Reuters.
Operating margin slipped to 39.6% from 40.8%.
Shares of ITT Education were inactive premarket and closed Wednesday at $62.74. The stock is down 36% in the past year.
-By Lauren Pollock and Jenny Roth, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2356; firstname.lastname@example.org