* Q4 EPS $0.66, vs estimate of $0.61
* Total revenue fell 3 percent
* Does not see reduction in headcount in '09
* Shares rise as much as 7 percent (Adds CEO comments, details from conference call, share movement)
By Sweta Singh
BANGALORE, Jan 29 (Reuters) - U.S. agency broker Investment Technology Group (ITG.N) reported quarterly profit above analysts' average estimate and said it does not expect to reduce headcount in 2009, sending its shares up 7 percent.
The company also expects to pull a tight thread over its expenses in 2009 and said it had cut/postponed several development projects, including wealth management programs, that showed little near-term visibility, Chief Executive Bob Gasser said in a conference call with analysts.
Net income for the fourth quarter was $28.7 million, or 66 cents a share, compared with $30.0 million, or 68 cents a share, a year ago, the New York-based electronic trading firm said.
Included in the quarter's operating results were charges related to severance costs, write-downs of capitalized costs and unrealized loss on NYSE Euronext NYX.N, it said.
"Changes in the competitive landscape will be very very positive for us. A lot of our competitors are very wounded," CEO Gasser told Reuters, adding the company has seen client inflow due to consolidation in the broker-dealer space.
Revenue for the quarter fell 3 percent to $190.1 million, but beat analysts' estimate of $186.1 million.
Commission revenue, the largest contributor to total revenue, fell 2 percent to $163.4 million. Non-U.S. revenue fell 19 percent to $46 million in the quarter.
Shares of the company were trading up almost 3 percent at $22.30 in afternoon trade on the New York Stock Exchange. They touched a high of $23.35 earlier in the day. (Editing by Gopakumar Warrier, Himani Sarkar)