May 12, 2008 / 7:13 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Russel Metals profit flat despite revenue rise

TORONTO, May 12 (Reuters) - Russel Metals (RUS.TO) said on Monday its first-quarter profit edged slightly higher, as both revenues and costs rose.

The Toronto-based metals distributor earned C$29.2 million, or 46 Canadian cents a share, up from C$28.7 million, or 46 Canadian cents a share, in the year-before period.

Analysts polled by Reuters Estimates had expected, on average, a profit of 52 Canadian cents a share, before exceptional items.

Quarterly revenue rose 4.2 percent to C$712.3 million, while its cost of sales and operating expenses rose 3.5 percent to C$660.2 million.

Chief Executive Bud Siegel said in a statement that he expected wider operating margins in the second quarter due to rising steel prices.

Russel shares were up 15 Canadian cents at C$30.95 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. ($1=$1.00 Canadian) (Reporting by Cameron French; editing by Rob Wilson)

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