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STE

Healthcare Stocks Mixed in Afternoon Trade; Steris Climbs to Record High After Q4 EPS Beat, FY15 Outlook

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Healthcare stocks were mixed this afternoon, with the NYSE Healthcare Sector Index falling about 0.1% and shares of healthcare companies in the S&P 500 rising about 0.3% as a group.

In company news, Steris Corp ( STE ) rose to a record high Thursday after the infection-control company reported fiscal Q4 earnings that beat analyst estimates for the January-to-March period and forecasted per-share net income during the current fiscal year topping Wall Street expectations.

STE said it earned $38.9 million, or $0.65 per share, during the three months ended March 31, down from $41.4 million during the same quarter last year. Excluding one-time items, adjusted net income for the quarter grew 30% over year-ago levels to $54.2 million, or $0.91 per share, beating the Capital IQ consensus by $0.05 per share.

Revenue grew 8.7% year over year to $465.3 million, topping the Street view by $9.11 million.

STE also is projecting per-share net income for the 12 months ending next March in a range of $2.78 to $2.91 per share, nudging consensus opinion by at least $0.02 per share.

The company's shares rose as much as 11% today to a new, all-time high of $52.90 apiece, more recently drifting down to their current range of $52.50 a share, up 10.2%. The stock was up nearly 19% over the past 12 years.

In other sector news,

(+) CSLT, (+8.9%) Q1 revenue grows 342.1% year over year to $8.4 mln, topping analyst expectations by $1.82 mln. Net loss of $0.72 per share misses by $0.47. Q2 revenue guidance tops consensus by at least $850,000.

(-) SCMP, (-2.3%) Q1 earnings of $700,000, or $0.02 per share, reverses year-ago net loss of $3.1 mln but lags consensus by $0.02. Revenue rises 31% over the same period last year to $22.2 mln, trailing forecasts by $1.99 mln.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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