Patterson Companies (PDCO: Quote) said its fourth quarter profit was slightly down to $62.14 million from $62.71 million last year. Earnings per share rose to $0.58 from $0.53 in the same quarter a year ago.
Net income for the recent quarter included incremental expense of $0.03 per share related to Patterson's Employee Stock Ownership Plan, or ESOP. Excluding this ESOP-related expense, earnings were $0.61 per share.
On average, 14 analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected the company to report earnings of $0.56 per share. Analysts' estimates typically exclude special items.
Net sales grew 6% year-over-year to $936.33 million. Analysts expected revenues of $915.62 million.
Scott Anderson, president and chief executive officer, commented, "We are encouraged by Patterson's improved fourth quarter results as each of our three businesses operated at planned levels despite persistently soft economic conditions. Within Patterson Dental, sales of consumable supplies increased for the fourth consecutive quarter, an indication of the continued strengthening of the overall North American dental market.
We also are encouraged by the solid improvement in sales of dental equipment given the fact that equipment sales were particularly robust in the year-earlier period. In addition to mid-single digit sales growth of basic equipment, we benefited from strong demand for CEREC systems from new users..."
Patterson issued earnings guidance of $2.10 to $2.16 per share for fiscal 2013. Analysts expect earnings of $2.13 per share.
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by RTT Staff Writer
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