Nike profit beats Street view but sales dwindle

 @ibtimes
on March 18 2009 5:16 PM

Nike Inc , the largest global athletic shoe and clothing maker, beat Wall Street expectations on Wednesday with third quarter earnings but warned of shrinking worldwide demand.

Net profit in Nike's fiscal third quarter ended February 28 was $243.8 million, or 50 cents per share, from $463.8 million, or 92 cents per share, a year earlier.

But excluding a 49-cent per-share impairment charge from the recently-acquired Umbro soccer brand, Nike earned 99 cents per share. Analysts, on average, had been expecting the company to post earnings of 79 cents, according to Reuters Estimates.

Demonstrating that the shoe giant is not immune to a worsening global consumer environment that has seen shoppers cut back on purchases, revenue fell 2 percent to $4.44 billion, just shy of the $4.48 billion expected by Wall Street.

Nike said it expected worldwide future orders -- scheduled for delivery between March and July -- to slide 10 percent.

Its shares, which are down 10 percent this year, held steady in extended trade after closing on Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange at $45.92, up 1 percent.

(Reporting by Alexandria Sage; editing by Carol Bishopric)

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