May 9, 2012 / 2:42 PM / in 6 years

Westport Innovations falls on wider-than-expected loss

May 9 (Reuters) - Shares of Westport Innovations slipped as much as 10 percent after the company, which develops natural gas-powered engines for vehicles, posted a wider-than-expected quarterly loss on higher research and development costs.

Vancouver-based Westport’s shares were down 6 percent at C$26.35 in Wednesday morning trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. They touched a low of C$25.17 earlier in the session.

Canaccord Genuity cut its price target on Westport’s stock to $34 from $44.

The company, which reported first-quarter results on Tuesday, saw research and development costs rise 62 percent in the quarter.

“With research and development likely to scale up with new partnerships, we are lowering 2012 estimates,” Jefferies analyst Laurence Alexander wrote in a note to clients. He trimmed his full-year earnings estimate to a loss of $1.35 per share from a profit of 70 cents a share. (Reporting by Swetha Gopinath in Bangalore; Editing by Viraj Nair)

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