Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) reported its first quarter earnings before opening bell, and the company came out ahead of expectations. Analysts were predicting 8 cents per share on revenue of $984.2 million, but the toymaker reported earnings of 11 cents per share on revenue of $995.6 million. Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT)’s net-quarter income more than quadrupled the net income of the same quarter a year ago, coming in at $38.5 million.

Mattel

The fact that Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) was able to pull off such a strong quarter is an important sign for the company because usually the fourth quarter is seasonally slow because it comes right after the holiday shopping season.

However, one of the main reasons the company did so much better this quarter is because in the first quarter of last year, it took a large charge in connection with the acquisition of HIT Entertainment, which owned the Bob the Builder and Thomas the Tank Engine toy lines. Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) paid $680 million for the company.

Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT)’s top selling products were its girls’ brands, especially the American Girl and Monster High toy lines. Sales of American Girl items jumped 32 percent, while sales of the company’s Monster High brand toys and other girls’ brand names rose 56 percent.

Sales of Barbie, which was once Mattel’s hottest-selling girl brand, actually fell 2 percent, which is the fourth time the brand’s sales have fallen during the last five quarters. Sales for the company’s Wheels brands, including Tyco R/C, Matchbox and Hot Wheels, also dropped by 2 percent, while Fisher Price sales dipped 7 percent.

Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) also declared a 36 cents per share dividend for its second quarter, which will be paid on June 14 to shareholders who own the stock as of May 23. The company bought back 240,000 shares of common stock for about $9 million during the first quarter.

As of the moment of this writing, shares of Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) were up .63 percent in premarket trading.

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