Financial results at Educational Development Corp. continue to suffer from comparisons to the record highs they hit last year when customers flocked to buy the company’s children’s books and the ranks of EDC’s home-based party sales reps soared. With children back in school, sales for the third quarter fell 32.5% in the period ended November 30, 2021, from the comparable period a year ago, dropping to $45.1 million. Net income dropped 39.5%, to $2.6 million.

EDC president and CEO Craig White noted that as business returned to more normal patterns, sales in the third quarter were 8.7% higher than the third quarter of fiscal 2020, the period before EDC’s business was affected by the pandemic. Earnings, however, were down slightly, dropping to $2.6 million from $2.7 million two years ago.

Looking at the nine-month period, sales fell 45.4% compared to a year ago, to $118.9 million, and earnings dropped 23.8%, to $8 million. Compared to fiscal 2020, sales over the nine months were up 28.1% and earnings rose 56.3%. In prepared remarks, White suggested that EDC expects results to be ahead of pre-pandemic levels for the final quarter of fiscal 2021 “and beyond.”