Reynolds American's First Quarter Profits Soar

Reynolds American says its profit rose 54 percent in the first quarter, driven by a gain from the termination of a joint venture.

The maker of Camel and Kool cigarettes said Wednesday it earned
$505 million, or $1.71 a share in the January-Marh period. That was up from $328 million, or $1.11 a share, a year ago.

But excluding the $328 million pretax gain from the joint venture termination, profit at the second-largest U.S. tobacco company fell 10.1 percent to $295 million, or $1 per share. That is below the average analyst forecast of $1.15 a share as measured by a survey by Thomson Financial.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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