Fastenal’s stock surges as profit, sales rise above expectations

Shares of Fastenal Co.

FAST, +1.21%

surged 5.6% in premarket trading Friday after the maker of fasteners, tools and manufacturing supplies reported third-quarter profit and sales that rose above expectations. Net income increased to $213.5 million, or 37 cents a share, from $197.6 million, or 34 cents a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet consensus for earnings per share was 35 cents. Sales grew 7.8% to $1.38 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $1.37 billion, amid higher unit sales and higher product pricing. Fastenal said the “general slowing” in economic activity seen during the second quarter continued into the third quarter. Gross margin declined to 47.2% from 48.1%. The stock has gained 2.2% over the past three months through Thursday, while the S&P 500

SPX, +0.64%

has slipped 2.1%.

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