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CRA International falls following 1Q report

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of CRA International Inc. skidded Thursday after the consulting firm said several of its businesses struggled during the first quarter.

Charles River Associates said results from its finance, life sciences, and strategy consulting unit Marakon fell short of expectations. CRA said results at the finance unit suffered because several litigation engagements slowed down at the same time.

Marakon and the life science business both had a slow quarter. The company said it was disappointed with the results, and said its total revenue fell 9 percent to $63.1 million for the quarter.

CRA added that the environment for mergers and acquisitions was also weak during the first quarter.

Its shares lost $3.71, or 17.4 percent, to $17.60 in afternoon trading.

The company said its net income grew to $3 million, or 29 cents per share, from $519,000, or 5 cents per share. CRA said it earned 31 cents per share if one-time items are excluded.

Analysts were expecting net income of 29 cents per share, according to FactSet.