Fastenal (FAST) logged an in-line 13% bump in third-quarter profits on Thursday as the industrial hardware supply stores operator generated double-digit sales growth despite the tough economy.
Shares of the Winona, Minn.-based company rallied around 3% in response to the results.
Fastenal said it earned $109.3 million, or 37 cents a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $96.8 million, or 33 cents a share, a year earlier. Analysts had been projecting EPS of 37 cents.
Revenue jumped 10% to $802.6 million, barely ahead of the Street’s view of $805 million. Gross margins dipped to 51.6% from 51.9%.
Fastenal said a slowdown in daily sales growth that began in the second quarter continued into the third, mirroring the slowing global economy.
Fastenal had 15,431 employees as of the end of the third quarter, up 1.7% from the end of the second quarter.
Despite only meeting expectations, shares of Fastenal rose 3.38% to $43.75 ahead of the opening bell on Thursday. The company’s shares had down about 3% on the year as of Wednesday’s close.