December 8, 2010 / 4:31 PM / in 7 years

UPDATE 1-Transcontinental Q4 profit rises, ups dividend

* Q4 EPS C$0.55 vs C$0.53 last year

* Q4 adj EPS C$0.77

* Q4 rev down 4 percent

* Shares rise 6 pct to 2-year high

Dec 8 (Reuters) - Transcontinental Inc (TCLa.TO), Canada’s biggest commercial printer, posted higher fourth-quarter profit partly helped by cost cuts, and raised its annual dividend, sending its shares up to a two-year high.

For the August-October quarter, the company posted a net income of C$44.5 million ($44 million), or 55 Canadian cents a share, compared with C$43.1 million, or 53 Canadian cents a share, a year earlier.

The company, which started printing Canada’s leading daily The Globe and Mail since October in a contract worth C$1.7 billion, posted adjusted net income, excluding unusual items, of $62.9 million, or 77 Canadian cents a share.

Consolidated revenue fell 4 percent to C$570 million.

Analysts on average were expecting the company to earn 64 Canadian cents a share, on revenue of C$587.1 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

In October, Transcontinental said it will close its printing plant in Boucherville, Quebec, as it tries to stay competitive in a changing market, affecting some 180 employees. [ID:nSGE69Q0LX]

The company raised its annual dividend per participating share by 22.2 percent to 44 Canadian cents per share.

The Quebec, Montreal-based company’s shares, which have gained about a fifth in value year to date, were up 4.5 percent at C$16.06 in late morning trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange. They touched a high of C$16.30 earlier. ($1=1.012 Canadian Dollar) (Reporting by Aftab Ahmed in Bangalore; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier) (aftab.ahmed@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 4135 5800; Reuters Messaging: aftab.ahmed.reuters.com@reuters.net))

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