SANTA ANA, Calif. ( TheStreet) - Ingram Micro's (IM - Get Report) fourth-quarter sales came in well ahead of Wall Street's average view but the company's stock fell in extended trades as its profit came in a penny short because of weak gross margins.
The Santa Ana, Calif.-based technology products distributor enjoyed revenue of $9.88 billion, up from $8.81 billion in the same period last year, and well above Wall Street's forecast of $9.57 billion.
The company reported a profit of $115 million, or 71 cents a share, for the December period, including a gain of 5 cents a share related to a partial release of reserves for commercial taxes on software imports into Brazil. Excluding that gain, earnings per share would total 66 cents a share, just shy of the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.
The company's results follow good quarterly numbers from a slew of big-name technology firms, including Apple (AAPL - Get Report) , IBM (IBM - Get Report) and McAfee (MFE), and suggest that corporations are beefing up their technology infrastructure."Sales levels for Asia-Pacific and Latin America reached quarterly highs and sales growth in North America - for both the fourth quarter and the year - was the strongest in 10 years," said Gregory Spierkel, the Ingram Micro CEO, in a statement. "Strong demand for technology products provided a welcome tailwind." The firm's fourth-quarter gross margin, however, was 5.66%, a decrease of three basis points compared to the prior year's quarter, and Spierkel prepped Wall Street for more of the same in the current quarter. "We expect