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Stratasys posts 4Q loss but beats Street

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Stratasys Ltd., a maker of three-dimensional "printers" that are used to produce models and prototypes, posted a loss for its fourth quarter as it absorbed Objet, an Israeli rival.

But the company beat earnings expectations for the quarter and issued a full-year sales forecast that ranged higher than analysts were expecting.

Stratasys lost $4.2 million, or 16 cents per share, for the period ended Dec. 31. In the same quarter a year earlier, it earned $5.8 million, or 27 cents per share.

Removing one-time items and the cost of stock-based compensation, earnings were 40 cents per share, up 40 percent from a year ago. Analysts polled by FactSet were on average expecting earnings of 38 cents per share.

Revenue increased 63 percent to $71.2 million, chiefly because of the all-stock acquisition of Objet on Dec. 1. Compared to the combined revenue of both companies last year, revenue rose 23 percent.

The company now foresees 2013 adjusted earnings of $1.80 to $1.95 per share on revenue of $430 million to $445 million. The earnings forecast straddles the average analyst forecast, at $1.89 per share, but the revenue forecast stretches above the analyst forecast at $431.4 million.

Shares of Stratasys rose $4.17, or 6.5 percent, to $68.43 in midday trading. The day's high of $72.69 was the highest since mid-February.

Stratasys has headquarters in both Eden Prairie, Minn., and Rehvot, Israel, and is incorporated in Israel.