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Magyar Telekom Rises to 3-Week High After Profit: Budapest Mover

Aug. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Magyar Telekom Nyrt. rose to the highest level in three weeks after quarterly profit at Hungary’s largest telecommunication-service provider beat estimates.

Shares of the unit of Germany’s Deutsche Telekom AG climbed 0.9 percent to 325 forint at the close in Budapest. That’s the highest level since July 18 and brings the gain over the past five days to 4.5 percent. The stock was the most-traded on the benchmark BUX Index, which surged 2.8 percent.

Second-quarter net income climbed 14 percent to 12.2 billion forint ($54.5 million), beating the 11.2 billion forint average estimate of 10 analysts on Bloomberg. The company, which posted a 7.9 percent increase in quarterly sales, said today it expects higher revenue for the year, compared with a June forecast that predicted no change.

The strong results surpassed expectations and may spark a rally in the stock from its current level, KBC Securities in Budapest said in an e-mailed note today.

Since rising to power in 2010, Prime Minister Viktor Orban has levied extraordinary taxes on telecommunications companies. Shares of Magyar Telekom slumped to a record low on July 30, triggered by higher taxes on phone calls and speculation the stock’s weighting in MSCI Inc.’s Hungarian basket of equities will be cut in an index review this month.

The shares have plunged 13 percent this year, compared with a 3.4 percent increase for the benchmark gauge. Four analysts recommend investors buy the stock, while eight say hold and four say sell, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

To contact the reporter on this story: Marton Eder in Budapest at meder4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Zoltan Simon at zsimon@bloomberg.net

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