McGraw Hill profit beats estimates as S&P shines

Reuters

* Third-qtr cont ops adj earnings/shr $0.80 vs est $0.77

* Revenue rises 7 pct

* S&P Ratings revenue up 8 pct

Oct 22 (Reuters) - Standard & Poor's owner, McGraw HillFinancial Inc, reported a higher-than-expected 56percent jump in quarterly profit due to strong growth at therating agency and S&P Dow Jones indices.

The company, which also raised its full-year adjusted profitforecast, said net income from continuing operations jumped to$235 million, or 84 cents per share, in the third quarter from$151 million, or 53 cents per share, a year earlier.

The rise comes as the company is fighting a $5 billion U.S.government lawsuit that accuses Standard & Poor's of misleadinginvestors by inflating credit ratings on risky mortgage-backedsecurities before the housing crash.

The company, whose rivals include Moody's Corp's,Moody's Investors Service and Fimalac SA's FitchRatings, raised its 2013 outlook to an adjusted profit of $3.25to $3.30 per share from $3.15-$3.25.

On an adjusted basis, the company earned 80 cents per sharefrom continuing operations in the quarter ended Sept. 30.

Total revenue rose 7 percent to $1.19 billion.

Analysts on average had expected earnings of 77 cents pershare on revenue of $1.17 billion, according to Thomson ReutersI/B/E/S.

Revenue from the company's commercial and commoditiesbusinesses, which include the Platts brand, rose 7 percent to$255 million. Revenue from its S&P Dow Jones indices grew 14percent to $124 million.

Revenue at S&P Ratings increased 8 percent to $540 million,driven by an increase in bank loan ratings.

The 125-year old company's shares, which have risen about 19percent in the last three months, closed at $69.79 on the NewYork Stock Exchange on Monday.

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