Tax Breaks Boost Kelly Services Earnings

Shares of Troy, Mich.-based Kelly Services (NASDAQ: KELYA  ) were on the upswing in early trading Wednesday, following publication of the company's Q3 2013 earnings report that showed Kelly beating earnings expectations for the quarter, despite missing on revenues.

Kelly reported collecting $1.3 billion in revenues for the quarter, which was less than it collected last year, and less, too, than the $1.38 billion in revenues that Wall Street had anticipated. Nonetheless, Kelley grew its earnings per diluted share by 14% year over year to $0.49 -- significantly higher than the Street estimate of $0.36 per share. Absent a $500,000 charge for restructuring, earnings would have been still higher -- $0.51 per diluted share.

Company CEO Carl T. Camden pronounced himself "pleased that our third quarter performance surpassed our expectations despite an erratic and lackluster economy."

Particularly pleasing were "strong revenue growth and outsized operating profits" in the company's "Americas" unit. But much of Kelly's increase in profitability, it should be noted, arose from a significantly lower tax burden in Q3 2013, than the company encountered one year ago. In Q3 2012, Kelly faced an income tax expense of $6.7 million. In Q3 2013 -- only $0.1 million.

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