Stock Watch: Strong Q1, Outlook Boost Homestore

Homestore.com, Inc. (Nasdaq: HOMS) was up 1 23/32 at 24 25/32 early Thursday after reporting better-than-expected results for the first quarter.

The company said revenue for the quarter rose 271 percent to $38.6 million from $10.4 million pro forma, while gross margin improved to 73 percent from 56 percent pro forma. The pro forma net loss — excluding items — was $10.0 million, or 14 cents a share, compared with a loss of $17.2 million, or 31 cents, in the same quarter last year. Analysts were expecting a loss of 16 cents a share.

Homestore attributed the revenue gain to higher sales of professional subscriptions and an increase in advertising revenue. Traffic on the site was also strong, topping three million unique users during March.

“We anticipate the company will reach cash profitability earlier than expected,” said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Stuart Wolff.

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