Investors liked the fourth quarter numbers that DST Systems put out Thursday morning , lifting the stock nearly 4 percent.
Shares in the Kansas City financial services company closed up $2.41 to $66.94.
Analysts highlighted the company’s decision to increase the frequency of its stock dividend, the announcement of additional stock buybacks and continued sales of assets not connected to DST’s business operations.
The company reported a 3 percent dip in its fourth quarter profits despite a large charge tied to its operations in the United Kingdom that the company announced Wednesday.
The charge of $60.8 million reflected the company’s reduced expectations of the value of its U.K. business rather than an expense of cash.
DST said it still earned $37.9 million in the last three months of 2012, or 82 cents per share. A year ago, it had earned $39.2 million, or 88 cents a share, in the fourth quarter.
Revenues in the quarter were $658.6 million, up 5.6 percent from a year ago.
Other notable gainers Thursday included Great Plains Erergy, up 1.3 percent, UMB Financial, up 0.8 percent, and Kansas City Life Insurance, up 0.9 percent.
Decliners included YRC, Sprint, H&R Block and Garmin.
Overall, stocks fell Thursday, but the Standard & Poor’s 500 still logged its best January since 1997.
The Standard and Poor’s 500 fell 3.85 points, or 0.26 percent, to close at 1,498.11.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 49.84 points, or 0.36 percent, to close at 13,860.58. . It’s up 5.8 percent this month.
The Nasdaq composite fell 0.18 points, or 0.01 percent, to close at 3,142.13.
It’s up 4.1 percent this month.
The BATS 1000 fell 35.09 points, or 0.21 percent, to close at 16,936.94.
Stocks got a small lift early Thursday from a report on business activity in the Chicago area before drifting lower. The Chicago Business Barometer for January came in at 55.6, a higher reading than analysts had forecast. Readings above 50 indicate that economic activity is expanding.
Advancing stocks on the New York Stock Exchange outpaced declining ones. Volume of 3.9 billion shares was above average.
Capitol Federal Financial was unchanged at $11.75.
Cerner Corp. rose 8 cents, or 0.10%, to close at $82.55.
Commerce Bancshares Inc. rose 10 cents, or 0.27%, to close at $37.55.
Compass Minerals rose 24 cents, or 0.33%, to close at $72.05.
DST Systems Inc. rose $2.41, or 3.73%, to close at $66.94.
Ferrellgas Partners L.P. fell 8 cents, or 0.41%, to close at $19.32.
Garmin Ltd. fell 15 cents, or 0.39%, to close at $37.89.
Great Plains Energy rose 27 cents, or 1.28%, to close at $21.40.
H&R Block Inc. fell 30 cents, or 1.30%, to close at $22.77.
Inergy L.P. fell 13 cents, or 0.64%, to close at $20.04.
Kansas City Life Insurance Co. rose 36 cents, or 0.94%, to close at $38.74.
Kansas City Southern rose 26 cents, or 0.28%, to close at $93.11.
Layne Christensen Co. rose 1 cents, or 0.04%, to close at $22.67.
O’Reilly Automotive Inc. rose 91 cents, or 0.99%, to close at $92.65.
Sprint Nextel Corp. fell 2 cents, or 0.35%, to close at $5.63.
UMB Financial Corp. rose 37 cents, or 0.84%, to close at $44.27.
Waddell & Reed Financial Corp. rose 21 cents, or 0.53%, to close at $39.70.
YRC Worldwide Inc. fell 17 cents, or 2.65%, to close at $6.24.