NFP Stock Surges

National Financial Partners (NFP) saw its stock soar after it announced it might pay off outstanding amounts in its credit facility, Reuters reported.

Shares of the company were trading up 62% at $3.43 on the New York Stock Exchange.

In a conference call with analysts, the company said it has additional financial flexibility as it amended its credit facility in December. The company also posted quarterly results that exceeded analyst expectations, the news report said.

NFP reported a fourth quarter 2008 net loss of $10.7 million, or a loss of $0.26 per diluted share, compared with net income of $19.3 million, or income of $0.47 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2007, according to a release of its earnings. Fourth quarter 2008 cash earnings was $28.4 million, or $0.70 per diluted share, compared with $33.6 million, or $0.82 per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2007.

Operating performance improved from the third to the fourth quarter of 2008, according to the release. “As we outlined previously, we are focused on reducing firm operating expenses,’ said Jessica Bibliowicz, chairman, president, and CEO, in the release. “Our efforts impacted gross margin percentage, which improved 1.7 percentage points sequentially in the fourth quarter of 2008. In addition, we executed an amendment to our credit facility agreement in December, achieving our goal of obtaining additional financial flexibility in a difficult economic environment. Our focus remains on operating as efficiently as possible to maintain the profitability of our firms in a challenging economy.’