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What's happening?
Shares of American Public Education (NASDAQ:APEI) are up 13% today after reporting better-than-expected third-quarter earnings  before the opening bell.

Why it's happening
American Public Education's $84.7 million in revenue beat the Wall Street consensus of $82.7 million, and it also met bottom-line expectations with earnings of $0.51 per share, in line with the analyst consensus. The for-profit educator now expects to earn between $88.7 million and $90.4 million in revenue for the fourth quarter, which is based on guidance calling for 7% to 9% year-over-year growth over the fourth quarter  of 2013. This should result in earnings in the range of $0.50 to $0.54 per share. Both results top Wall Street's  fourth-quarter consensus, which had called for $85.9 million in revenue and $0.52 in EPS.

Alex Planes has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends American Public Education. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.