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Gentex Shares Slide After Lower Margin Forecast

Gentex Corp. declined after the maker of advanced-technology automotive rearview mirrors forecast that gross profit margin this quarter will trail the third-quarter result.

The shares dropped 0.4 percent to $17.17 at the close in New York, after falling as much as 12 percent for the biggest intraday slide since July 24. They are down 42 percent this year.

Fourth-quarter revenue will be about the same as a year earlier, when it had net sales of $260.3 million, according to a statement today by the Zeeland, Michigan-based company. Gross profit margin for the period “will be down slightly” from the third quarter’s 33.6 percent, Gentex said.

The company said on July 24 that four customers had decided to put rear-camera displays with the radio in the center console of a vehicle, rather than in the mirror. Those decisions will hurt 2013 and 2014 results, Gentex said at the time. No other customers have made such a move, according to today’s statement.

The automotive supplier said its board authorized buying back as many as 4 million additional shares.

Gentex reported third-quarter net income of $41.9 million, or 29 cents a share, down from $43.4 million, or 30 cents, a year earlier. The average of 11 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg was for 28 cents a share. Revenue declined less than 1 percent to $268.2 million.

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