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UPDATE 2-Sallie Mae 1st-qtr adj profit beats Street estimates
* Q1 adj EPS $0.55 vs est $0.52
* Q1 EPS $0.21 vs $0.32 last year
* Loan originations rise 23 pct in the quarter
* Sees 2012 private loan originations of $3.2 bln (Rewrites; Adds background, details, shares)
April 18 (Reuters) - Sallie Mae quarterly loan originations jumped as more students borrowed money to pay soaring tuition fees, and the largest U.S. student lender backed its full-year outlook.
Tuition costs are rocketing skywards across the United States, and college students are borrowing twice as much as they did a decade ago when adjusted for inflation, according to the College Board.
Sallie Mae's first-quarter core earnings of 55 cents per share stayed ahead of analysts' estimates of 58 cents per share on lower provision for loan losses and income tax expenses.
Loan originations for the quarter rose 23 percent to $1.2 billion.
The company, which trades under the formal name of SLM Corp, continues to expect private loan originations of $3.2 billion in 2012.
Outstanding student loan debt in the United States has crossed the trillion dollar mark, according to data from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
The CFPB, in a bid to protect students from being saddled with high debts and no jobs to pay them off, is supervising private student loan providers to ensure they comply with regulations.
Student loans have surpassed credit cards as the largest source of household debt after mortgages, according to the CFPB.
Sallie Mae's first-quarter net income was pulled down to $112 million, or 21 cents per share, from $175 million, or 32 cents per share a year a g o, by an increase in unrealized "mark-to-market" losses on derivative contracts.
Provision for loan losses fell 14 percent to $235 million.
Sallie Mae shares closed at $14.95 on Wednesday on the Nasdaq. They have gained about 4 percent of their value since the company's last reported results. (Reporting by Sharanya Hrishikesh in Bangalore; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)
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