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June 7 (Bloomberg) -- Thor Industries Inc., the maker of Airstream recreational vehicles and Champion buses, rose to its highest closing price in more than five years after reporting quarterly profit that exceeded analysts’ estimates.

The shares surged 12 percent to $46.16 at the close in New York, the highest since Nov. 2, 2007. The Elkhart, Indiana-based company’s stock has gained 23 percent this year, as the Standard & Poor’s Midcap 400 Index climbed 16 percent.

Thor’s fiscal third-quarter net income increased to $43.8 million from $41.3 million a year earlier, according to a statement yesterday. Excluding costs such as goodwill and asset writedowns, earnings for the three months ended April 30 were 97 cents a share, the company said. The average of seven analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg was 88 cents.

“We are now in the middle of the peak selling season for the RV industry, when demand improves and discounting tends to stabilize, leaving us in a strong position to finish out the year,” Chief Operating Officer Bob Martin said in the statement.

Sales of recreational vehicles are monitored as an economic indicator because the motor homes and travel trailers are discretionary purchases that consumers defer during a slump.

Thor’s quarterly revenue rose 13 percent to $1.05 billion. The company reported the third-quarter results after the close of New York trading yesterday.

To contact the reporter on this story: Bill Koenig in Southfield, Michigan at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jamie Butters at

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