HP also posted strong numbers in its lucrative Imaging and Printing Group, which makes the consumer and business printers and supplies that provide the bulk of the company’s profits. Operating profit for that business unit increased 10 percent over last year to $1.1 billion, or 15.3 percent of revenue. HP’s stock gained 36 cents to close at $43.13 on the New York Stock Exchange before the results were released. In after-hours trading, HP shares fell 56 cents to $42.57.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Analysts said the surging laptop sales indicated HP was making aggressive market-share gains at Dell’s expense in a fast-growing industry segment and has enough momentum to extend its expansion. “They clearly gained a lot of share. We were expecting strong results in PCs, but we didn’t expect them to be this strong,” said Shaw Wu, an analyst with American Technology Research. “They’re basically beating up Dell more and more, and there’s room for them to gain more share. From Dell’s perspective, that could be very scary.” The Palo Alto-based computer and printer maker reported earning $1.55 billion, or 55 cents per share, for the quarter that ended Jan. 31, compared with $1.23 billion, or 42 cents per share, for the same period last year. Revenue for the period was $25.1 billion, compared with $22.7 billion for the same quarter last year. HP snagged the title of the world’s No. 1 seller of PCs worldwide from Dell late last year and continued to profit from that momentum in the first quarter. SAN FRANCISCO – Hewlett-Packard Co. stole another major slice of the personal computer market from struggling rival Dell Inc. in the first quarter – and analysts said HP still has room to grow. But concerns about mounting inventory and some investors’ unrealized hope that the quarter would be even better sent HP shares down $1.41, or 3.3 percent, to $41.72 in morning trading Wednesday on the New York Stock Exchange. After the market closed Tuesday, a spokesman said HP’s first-quarter profit jumped 26 percent as the company benefited from higher sales of laptop computers, printers and printing supplies during a robust holiday spending season. Its revenue from laptop sales jumped 40 percent in the quarter, compared with the same period a year ago. At the same time, revenue from desktop computer sales dropped 1 percent as portable counterparts become pervasive.