MILWAUKEE — Harley-Davidson's third-quarter profit fell nearly 8 percent on a planned reduction of motorcycle shipments for the quarter.
But its earnings topped Wall Street expectations, and its shares climbed more than 6 percent in afternoon trading.
The Milwaukee company said Tuesday that its net income was $150.1 million, or 69 cents per share, from July through September. That compares with $162.7 million, or 73 cents per share, a year ago.
But analysts polled by FactSet expected only 60 cents per share.
Revenue from motorcycles and related products was $1.13 billion, down 4.2 percent for the quarter and short of analysts' estimates of $1.14 billion.
Harley-Davidson Inc. said it shipped 50,670 motorcycles worldwide, a planned decrease of 6.2 percent that was in line with prior guidance. That led to a decline in revenue.
But dealers worldwide sold more than 73,000 new bikes during the quarter, a 4 percent increase over the prior year.
The company stuck with previous estimates that it would ship 270,000 to 275,000 motorcycles worldwide this year, a 3.5 percent to 5.5 percent increase over 2013. After the first quarter it expected 7 percent to 9 percent shipment growth. Harley-Davidson also expects to make capital expenditures of $215 million to $235 million this year, and post a full-year operating margin of 17.5 percent to 18.5 percent.
Harley's shares rose $3.58, or 6.1 percent, to $61.96 in afternoon trading Tuesday.
The shares have declined 8.6 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index has climbed 3 percent.
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