Harbinger Group returns to profit in 4th quarter

Harbinger Group returns to profit in 4th quarter, buoyed by large income tax benefit

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) -- Harbinger Group it returned to a profit in its fiscal fourth quarter, buoyed by a large income tax benefit and improved revenue for both its consumer products business and its financial services and insurance segment.

For the three months ended Sept. 30, the New York-based holding company earned $159.1 million, or 78 cents per share. That compares with a loss of $107.1 million, or 77 cents per share, a year ago.

The quarter included an income tax benefit of $135.9 million compared with gain of $13.4 million in the prior-year period.

Revenue shot up 35 percent to $1.2 billion from $888.5 million.

Revenue climbed for the consumer products unit, which includes Spectrum Brands, the company behind products ranging from Rayovac Batteries to George Foreman grills, edged up less than 1 percent to $832.6 million. Revenue for its insurance and financial services segment rose nearly sixfold, to $364.3 million.

Harbinger Group Inc., which is run by hedge fund manager Philip Falcone, said Tuesday said its full fiscal year net income climbed 35 percent to $29.9 million, or 15 cents per share, from $22.2 million, or 9 cents per share, in the previous year.

Annual revenue increased 29 percent to $4.48 billion from $3.48 billion, helped by a full-year of results from Fidelity & Guaranty Life Holdings Inc. Fidelity & Guaranty was acquired in April 2011. In addition, revenue for the consumer products unit, climbed 2 percent.

Fiscal 2012 results included an $85 million income tax benefit and a $41 million gain related to the reduced contingent purchase price of Fidelity & Guaranty. This was somewhat offset by a charge tied to its preferred stock.

Harbinger shares closed Monday at $8.70, and has more than doubled since the start of the year.

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