Strayer Education Inc. (STRA), a for- profit college with most of its campuses in the eastern U.S., rose the most in five months after saying quarterly new student enrollment increased 12 percent.
Strayer plans to open eight new campuses in 2012 if it gets approval from regulators, the Herndon, Virginia-based company said today in its first-quarter earnings statement. The stock rose 15 percent to $99.05 at the close of trading in New York.
For-profit college enrollment has been falling as Congress, the U.S. Justice Department and state attorneys general have investigated their marketing practices, and the Education Department restricted recruiting. This is the first quarter that Strayer has recorded growth in new student sign-ups since its second quarter of 2010, said Jeffrey Silber, an analyst with BMO Capital Markets in New York.
Strayer’s new enrollment increase is “likely one of the better performances to be seen this quarter,” he said in a note to clients. He rates the company “market perform,” and said the increase was “unexpected.”
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