UPDATE 3-Penn National raises outlook, shares jump

* Q2 adjusted EPS $0.29 vs Wall Street view $0.28

* Revenue up 3 percent

* Shares rise 11 percent
(Adds analyst comment, updates stock price)

LOS ANGELES, July 22 (BestGrowthStock) – Casino operator Penn
National Gaming Co (PENN.O: ) posted a better-than-expected
quarterly profit on Thursday and raised its full-year revenue
forecast, sending its shares up 11 percent.

The company — which operates casinos, racetracks and
off-track wagering sites in 15 states and Ontario, Canada —
posted an adjusted profit of 29 cents a share, ahead of the 28
cents a share forecast by analysts, according to Thomson
Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company focused on “navigating the current environment
and driving operating margin improvements” through cost
reductions and effective spending on marketing, CEO Peter
Carlino said in a statement.

“Penn has proven to be a capable operator in perhaps the
worst downturn in the gaming industry’s history,” Morgan Joseph
analyst Justin Sebastiano said in a research note. “What’s
more, Penn has enough growth opportunities/potential to grow
the top line while others, not having a project pipeline, may
find it difficult.”

The company has expansion plans in West Virginia,
Pennsylvania, Maryland, Kansas and Ohio — but Penn officials
said on a conference call that they see no compelling
opportunities for entering the Las Vegas market.

Including 20 cents per share in one time items related to
impairment losses in Ohio and a contract ending in Illinois,
net income fell to $9.2 million, or 9 cents a share, from $28.5
million, or 27 cents a share, a year earlier.

Revenue rose 3 percent to $598.3 million, beating the
$597.1 million expected by analysts.

Looking ahead, Penn said it expects third-quarter earnings
of 30 cents per share on revenue of $622.9 million.

For the year, Penn lowered its outlook for net income per
share to 98 cents from a previous estimate of $1.13, but that
includes the second quarter’s charges. Without the charges, the
new forecast would be $1.18 per share.

The company raised its full-year revenue outlook to $2.44
billion from $2.41 billion.

Penn shares were up $2.67 at $26.77 in Nasdaq trading.

Stock Investing

(Reporting by Deena Beasley; Editing by Derek Caney, Robert
MacMillan, Gary Hill)

UPDATE 3-Penn National raises outlook, shares jump