Columbia Sportswear exceeds expectations

PORTLAND — Columbia Sportswear Co., which makes outdoor apparel and footwear, said Thursday its third-quarter profit fell 7 percent, hurt by lower demand. But the results surpassed analyst expectations amid a difficult economy.

Profit for the quarter fell to $58.3 million, or $1.69 per share, from $62.6 million, or $1.72 per share last year.

Revenue fell 4 percent to $452.4 million from $471.1 million last year. Revenue fell in all regions except Latin America and Asia Pacific.

Analysts polled by Thomson Financial predicted a profit of $1.40 per share on revenue of $450 million.

The company said backlog declined 11 percent as of Sept. 30, compared with a year ago as retailers pared inventory.

However, the Portland company said the outdoor category has been resilient despite a weak retail environment.

Shares fell 63 cents, or 2 percent, to $30.41 during after-market trading, after rising 46 cents during regular trading to close at $31.04.

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