PC Connection weathers government shutdown

Company's sales increase, no thanks to weak federal demand

PC Connection’s results improved only slightly in its latest quarter, thanks in part to the budget battles in Washington.

The company said federal sales dropped by some 18 percent in the third quarter ending Sept. 30, the day before the 16-day government shutdown was to begin. The company’s earnings release blamed “budget constraints” for the weak sales.

But commercial and educational sales more than made up for the loss, and the Merrimack-based IT mail order company ended up with $580.4 million in sales for the quarter, 3.4 percent over the previous year, resulting in a $10.6 million profit, or 40 cents a share. That’s about $700,000 more than the third quarter of 2012.

Year to date, the company’s sales have increased by 2.5 percent, to $1.64 billion, resulting in net income of $26.8 million (98 cents a diluted share), some $1.6 million more than 2012.

The biggest gain was seen in the small and medium commercial market, which increased 7.3 percent to $235 million, mainly due to an 11 percent boost in notebook and tablet sales and 14 percent in desktop/server sales. Large account sales totaled $193 million, about the same as the previous year.

Stockholders equity is up to nearly $320 million, almost $30 million more than at the beginning at the start of the year.

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