External storage market leader EMC reported Oct. 22 that it banked $298 million in profit in the third quarter on total revenue of $3.52 billion, but also that its profit was $95 million-or 24 percent less-than a year ago.
Overall revenue was down 5 percent from a year ago. Nonetheless, EMC, which predicted overall 2009 earnings of 87 cents per common stock share, posted a performance that surpassed most Wall Street expectations in the slow-moving world economy.
Analysts polled by FactSet Research Systems estimated, on average, earnings per share of 21 cents and sales of $3.46 billion, MarketWatch reported. The report also beat First Call analyst average estimates for consolidated revenue by approximately $70 million.
EMC's cash flow is impressive. In the third quarter, the company generated operating cash flow of $888 million and free cash flow of $745 million and ended the quarter with cash and investments of $8.4 billion.
In the year to date, EMC has generated operating cash flow of $2.3 billion and free cash flow of $1.8 billion.
CEO and President Joe Tucci and CFO David Goulden were upbeat in their assessments and future guidance on the early morning earnings call.
"Customers are signaling more comfort spending their IT budgets, which gives EMC confidence in our ability to perform well and achieve our full-year 2009 targets," Tucci said.