Toolmaker Black & Decker Corp. (NYSE: BDK) reported a lower first quarter profit on Wednesday, but still managed to beat analysts’ expectations, sending shares of the firm higher.

The company reported that earnings fell to $108.1 million from $113.1 million compared to the same quarter a year ago. Earnings on a per share basis rose to $1.61 compared to $1.45 in the same period last year. There were 11 million less shares outstanding than the last quarter.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial, on average, expected a profit of $1.49 per share.

The Towson, Md., tool maker said strong international demand drove growth in its power tools and accessories business segment through its first quarter. Sales grew 3 percent to $1.58 billion. Foreign currency translation had a positive 2 percent impact on sales.

Black & Decker expects continued weakness in the housing industry to put pressure on the U.S. economy and its end markets, it said, giving a cautious outlook for the year. It also said it was facing an increasing level of commodity inflation, primarily reflecting rising nickel prices.

The company said it was modestly increasing its full year guidance to a range of $6.35 to $6.60 per share, from $6.25 to $6.55 at the end of the fourth quarter.

Flat sales were expected for its second-quarter, and it projected an earnings-per-share between $1.70 to $1.75.

Shares of the firm rose $2.97, or 3.31 percent to 92.73 in afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange.