NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Cognizant surged in premarket trading on Wednesday, boosted by the services specialist's better-than-expected first-quarter results and guidance.
The Teaneck, N.J.-based firm brought in revenue of $2.02 billion, an 18.1% hike on the prior year's quarter and above analysts' estimates of $2.01 billion.
Excluding items, Cognizant earned $1.02 a share, up from 88 cents a share in the year-ago quarter. Analysts surveyed by Yahoo! Finance were looking for earnings of 93 cents a share.
Cognizant shares rose 5.5% to $68.45 before market open.
"Our performance during the first quarter was strong, and we are encouraged by the healthy demand for our broad range of services," said Cognizant CEO Francisco D'Souza, in a statement.
For the second quarter, Cognizant expects revenue of at least $2.13 billion and earnings, excluding items, of $1.06 a share. Analysts surveyed by Yahoo! Finance were expecting sales of $2.11 billion and earnings of 97 cents a share.
The company also reaffirmed its full-year revenue guidance of at least 17% growth and expanded its stock repurchase program by $500 million to $1.5 billion.
BlackBerry was another gainer before market open, rising 1.95% to $15.11. The Canadian handset maker was also the most active premarket Nasdaq stock on share volume of 394,842.
Apple shares rose 0.29% to $459.98, while Yahoo! crept up 0.08% to $12.45.
Facebook rose 0.19% to $26.94, while Tesla , which reports its first-quarter results after market close, climbed 2.68% to $57.
Symantec , however, was a big loser, plunging 6.37% to $23.50 after reporting its fourth-quarter results on Tuesday. The software maker's shares were weighed down by its shrinking profit.
--Written by James Rogers in New York.
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