Cisco Systems Inc.'s first-quarter profit jumped 37%, edging the world's largest networking supplier past Wall Street's estimate Wednesday as demand continued rising for sophisticated Internet machinery.
But shares plunged more than 9% in after-hours trading on fears about sluggishness in orders from large U.S. businesses, which some analysts worried could portend a wider slowdown.
Net income was $2.2 billion, or 35 cents a share for the three months ended Oct. 27. That compares with $1.6 billion in profit, or 26 cents, a year earlier.
Stripping out one-time charges, the San Jose company reported earning 40 cents a share, 4 cents more than the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Financial.
Cisco's strong sales in the first quarter helped it slightly exceed analysts' forecasts. Cisco rang up $9.55 billion during the period, a 17% jump over the $8.2 billion recorded last year. Analysts were expecting $9.54 billion.
Concerns linger, however, about the company's ability to sustain its growth rate. Cisco shares finished the regular trading session down $1.33 at $32.75.
Cisco's growth is robust in other countries, but some analysts worry about slowing in orders from large U.S. firms.
That segment was expanding at a 20% clip early last year. But its growth has fluctuated since then, falling in the current quarter to the mid-single-digit range.