Third-quarter profits for medical device company NuVasive beat Wall Street's expectations, but shares dip nearly 3% anyway on missed sales targets, lowered guidance.



Shares of NuVasive Inc. (NSDQ:NUVA) slid nearly 3% this morning after the medical device company reported lower-than-expected sales for the 3rd quarter and lowered its outlook for the rest of the year.

The San Diego-based spinal implant maker posted profits of $2.4 million, or 5¢ per share, on sales of $148.4 million during the 3 months ended Sept. 30., marking a swing from losses of $67.6 million, or $1.69 per share, and an 11.7% sales increase compared with Q3 2011.

Adjusted to exclude 1-time profits, earnings per share reached 23¢, ahead of Wall Street analysts' expectation for adjusted EPS of 21¢. But "market challenges" led to lower sales, CEO Alex Lukianov said in prepared remarks, leading investors on The Street to push share prices down in heavy trading volume.