H&R Block shares gain more than 8 percent in early Friday trading

Shares in H&R Block Inc. climbed more than 8 percent in early trading Friday despite reporting a wider third quarter loss.

The Kansas City-based tax preparation giant released its quarterly results and update on the tax -filing season after the markets closed Thursday. Block said it lost $17.7 million in the quarter, from a loss of $3.3 million in the same period the previous year. Revenue also fell, largely the result of the late start to the tax season.

In addition, tax return volume was down 5.8 percent through February compared with 2012 results.

Nevertheless, shares in Block were up $2.10 to $27.08 this morning. That’s a gain of 8.4 percent.

An analyst at Oppenheimer raised the price target on the stock to $29 from $27.

Volume in Block stock this morning was heavy, with nearly 700,000 shares trading hands compared to an all-day average of about 880,000.