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Bill Cobb, H&R BlockFirst it was Intuit and later this week it was H&R Block reporting that the number of returns filed during tax season failed to meet expectations. Intuit was forced to change its forecast for the year ending July 31 while Block said the number of returns processed through April 18 were down just under 1 percent and that its share of the consumer tax market was flat.

At 22 million, the number of returns prepared by Block fell by 190,000. However, online return volume was up 10.04 percent and the volume of all digital returns rose by 3.2 percent. That compares with Intuit, which had originally expected growth of 8 percent to 10 percent for TurboTax for fiscal 2013, but was forced to regroup after the tax season closed with 4-percent revenue growth.

In a prepared statement, CEO Bill Cobb said the company had done well in face of the challenges. "I am pleased that we remained focused and executed well as we closed the tax season. We remain committed to our long-term growth initiatives for fiscal 2014 and beyond," Cobb said.

Block reported its market-share gain of 50 basis points in the digital online category was offset by an approximately 30-basis-point decline in the assisted category. U.S. assisted returns were off by 2.8 percent, reflecting lower overall filings nationally and were also affected by the changes in the Free Federal 1040EZ promotion, offered through February 15.

Last modified on Sunday, 02 June 2013
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