Nokia Expected to Post Ho-Hum Results
Nokia (NOK) is heading into a seasonally weak period that is neither too hot nor too cold, leaving many analysts to believe its first-quarter earnings results will be just as tepid.
The Espoo, Finland-based handset maker is set to post first-quarter results Thursday before the opening bell. According to the Thomson First Call summary, analysts expect Nokia to post a profit of 57 cents a share on $19.84 billion in sales. While revenue has grown sequentially over the last three quarters, if the company posts sales in line with estimates, it would be a decline of nearly 13% from the previous quarter.
Nokia is coming off a sparkling fourth quarter where handset sales hit 133.5 million in shipments. Still, open interest in Nokia options is somewhat balanced with not a lot of volume, indicating that investors don't expect much out of the forthcoming earnings report. Shares of the company are already down 15% on the year, hampered by fears of an economic downturn.
Two examples came in March, when Texas Instruments (TXN) lowered its quarterly forecast, saying demand for chips used in high-end, 3G cell phones deteriorated significantly. Not long after, Sony-Ericsson, the joint venture of Ericsson (ERIC) and Sony (SNE), warned of slowing sales in its line of midrange and high-end cell phones."We expect March to come in good, but not great, with guidance for 2008 industry units consistent with 10% growth forecasts," said American Technology Research analyst Mark McKechnie in a note. "
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