EMC has blamed missing Wall Street revenue expectations on the US government shutdown and a string of last-minute deals in the third quarter.
Analysts expected EMC's sales for the three months to 30 September to hit the $5.8bn (£3.56bn) mark, but the storage giant instead posted $5.54bn turnover.
Although the figure was up annually by five per cent, it fell £250m short of EMC's own internal forecast too.
Earlier this month, US debt concerns led to a partial shutdown of the government, and EMC said this strongly affected its sales figure.
On a conference call transcribed by Seeking Alpha, the firm's chief operating officer David Goulden said: "Many storage product orders from the US federal government that were expected to close in the last weeks of the quarter did not, due to less-than-expected year-end budget money and unexpected reprioritisation of these year-end budgets ahead of the federal government shutdown."
Goulden added that an extra $100m of the shortfall was accounted for due to last-minute customer spending.
"More storage products than we expected came in on the very last day of the quarter, which as you know was a Monday, making fulfilments to these orders in Q3 extremely difficult," he said. "As a result, storage product orders we received that we didn't ship in the quarter were $100m higher than we expected."
Net profit attributable to EMC slumped 6.4 per cent to $586m in Q3, but despite what Goulden described as a "disappointing quarter", he remained confident for the future.
"While our financial results for the third quarter were impacted by a decline in US federal spending and a backend-loaded quarter, we achieved almost all of our strategic and operational goals," he said.
"We were pleased to see storage demand accelerate in the third quarter excluding US federal, and we think this is an encouraging sign for the storage market overall. Going forward, we remain confident EMC will continue to grow and gain market share."
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