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Smith & Wesson shares climb after earnings report

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) -- Shares of Smith & Wesson Holding Corp. climbed in premarket trading Friday, a day after the gun maker reported a fiscal second-quarter profit, raised its 2013 earnings forecast and announced a share buyback.

The Springfield, Mass., company said Thursday after markets closed that it earned $21.2 million, or 31 cents per share, in the three months that ended Oct. 31. That compares to a loss of $1.6 million, or 2 cents per share, in last year's quarter, when results were dragged down by a security division it was trying to sell.

Revenue soared 48 percent to $136.6 million from $92.3 million a year ago.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet expected, on average, earnings of 23 cents per share on $136.1 million in revenue.

Smith & Wesson said it saw strong demand in the quarter for its M&P modern sporting rifles and polymer pistols, and supply chain improvements and production capacity increases helped the company offset the impact from its annual two-week shutdown.

The company now expects fiscal 2013 earnings from continuing operations of between $1 and $1.05 per share on $550 million to $560 million in revenue. That's up from its forecast in September for earnings of 85 to 90 cents per share on revenue of $530 million to $540 million.

Analysts expected, on average, earnings of 90 cents per share on $537.4 million in revenue.

Smith & Wesson also said Thursday its board of directors approved a plan to repurchase up to $20 million in shares until June 30.

Company shares rose 21 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $11.06 in premarket trading after rising as high as $11.20 earlier. That approached the stock's 52-week high price of $11.24, which it reached Oct. 1.