H&R Block Declines After Saying Bank Sale Possibly Delayed

H&R Block Inc. (HRB), the largest U.S. tax preparer, fell in extended trading after reporting a fiscal first-quarter loss that exceeded analysts’ estimates and saying it doesn’t expect to sell its bank assets before next year.

H&R Block declined 3.5 percent to $26.90 at 5:22 p.m. in New York trading. Adjusted net loss from continuing operations for the period ended July 31 widened to $108 million, or 40 cents a share, from $105 million, or 38 cents, a year earlier, the Kansas City, Missouri-based firm said today in a statement. The average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for an adjusted loss of 38 cents a share.

H&R Block said it doesn’t expect a decision from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency on the proposed sale of its bank assets to Republic Bank & Trust Co. by Sept. 30, delaying the deal. The company agreed to sell the assets in July as it sought to exit Federal Reserve oversight.

“While we’re disappointed that it is not likely that we’ll be able to complete the bank transaction in time for this tax season, we remain focused on exiting our bank and continue to believe it is in the best interests of our shareholders,” Chief Executive Officer Bill Cobb said in the statement.

Revenue rose 32 percent to $127 million from a year earlier the firm said. Operating expenses increased 15 percent to $266 million on foreign-exchange losses and higher legal fees, according to the statement.

H&R Block said the net loss for the quarter widened 7 percent to $115.2 million, or 42 cents a share, from $107.4 million, or 39 cents, a year earlier.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zeke Faux in New York at zfaux@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Scheer at dscheer@bloomberg.net; Christine Harper at charper@bloomberg.net

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