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DeVry says enrollment decline hurts 3Q revenue

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. (AP) -- DeVry Inc. said Tuesday that its fiscal third-quarter profit dropped more than 15 percent drop because of declining enrollments in its namesake school.

The company and other for-profit education companies have been struggling with weak enrollment due to increased scrutiny, new regulations and the sluggish economy, which has hampered students' ability to pay for additional education.

DeVry said its new undergraduate student enrollment at DeVry University, which makes up the bulk of its business, fell 21 percent year-over-year. While student enrollment improved in some sectors — increasing 17.5 percent at Carrington Colleges Group and 17 percent at Chamberlain College of Nursing — its overall student count fell nearly 7 percent for the quarter.

The company earned $56.8 million, or 88 cents per share, for the quarter that ended March 31. That is down from $67.1 million, or $1 per share, in the same quarter of 2012. After adjusting for restructuring charges and other expenses, it made 90 cents per share in the most recent quarter.

DeVry said weak enrollment hurt its revenue for the period, which fell 6 percent to $508.8 million.

Analysts polled by FactSet expected 81 cents per share on revenue of $518 million.

President and CEO Daniel Hamburger said management was disappointed in enrollment at its namesake school. He said the company is focused on better communicating the benefit of a degree to students, as well as aggressively managing its costs.

Investors were unhappy with the results as well and sent shares down $4.03, or 11.8 percent, to $30 in after-hours trading.