Any hopes that Cisco might offer some respite for the tech sector are likely wide of the mark, say analysts, citing concerns that Cisco's recent momentum is slowing. The networking giant reported solid fourth-quarter results in August, boosted by its U.S. enterprise business, but the Dow component may tell a different story this quarter.
"Given the slowdown in IT spending discussed by a plethora of technology companies in recent weeks, we find it hard to believe that Cisco will be able to maintain its encouraging tone around the Enterprise market and the looming 'Fiscal Cliff' is likely to provide incremental weakness for the Company," warned Brian White, an analyst at Topeka Capital Markets.Set against this backdrop, White also expects Cisco's forward commentary to turn more cautious. "Results from industry peers point to a challenging IT spending environment," added Stuart Jeffrey, an analyst at Nomura Equity Research. "Common themes from earnings included: continued weakness in EMEA, soft US enterprise and federal spending, and weakness in hardware investment." Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters are looking for Cisco to report revenue of $11.77 billion and earnings of 46 cents a share, up from $11.3 billion and 43 cents a share in the same period last year. Cisco has beaten Wall Street's earnings forecast for the last six quarters, but there's a question mark over whether this trend will continue. TheStreet will be live-blogging Cisco's results, starting at 3.45 PM ET:
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