Nike Inc posted better-than-expected quarterly earnings but its forward orders fell 12 percent, sending shares of the world's largest athletic shoe and clothing company down 5 percent.

Nike, which is shedding 5 percent of global staff as part of a broader push to lower costs in a tough economy, said net income in its fiscal fourth quarter ended May 31 fell to $341.4 million, or 70 cents per share, from $490.5 million, or 98 cents per share, a year earlier.

The results included a $144.5 million after-tax charge, or 29 cents per share, related to a company-wide realignment involving factory consolidation and job cuts.

Excluding those charges, Nike earned 99 cents per share, above the 96 cents expected, on average, by analysts polled by Reuters Estimates.

Revenue slid 7 percent in the quarter to $4.7 billion.

Shares of Nike fell to $50.40 in extended trading after closing at $53.02 in regular trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Alexandria Sage; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)