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Thor Industries 1Q revenue surges past estimates

JACKSON CENTER, Ohio (AP) -- Recreational vehicle maker Thor Industries Inc. said Monday its sales climbed about 30 percent in the fiscal first quarter, a result that was far better than Wall Street had expected, sending shares of the company higher in after-hours trading.

Thor said its preliminary consolidated sales totaled $876.8 million, about $140 million more than analysts had expected. The company said RV sales rose 36 percent compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2012, with strong growth in sales of towable RV and motorized RVs.

Analysts expected the company to report $735.9 million in revenue for the quarter ending Oct. 31, according to estimates compiled by FactSet.

Thor said RV sales rose 36 percent to $763 million, with towable RV sales growing 28 percent to $640.8 million and motorized RV sales up 95 percent to $122.2 million. The company said bus group revenue rose 2 percent to $113.8 million

At the end of the quarter Thor said its total RV backlog was up 73 percent compared to a year ago, representing $516.7 million in orders. Its total backlog increased 41 percent.

Thor reported $673 million in the year-ago quarter.

Thor Industries shares rose 42 cents to $40.15 on Monday. The stock traded as high as $40.44, its highest price since December 2007. In aftermarket trading the shares gained $2.77, or 6.9 percent, to $42.92.