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Market Preview: Brussels Calling

As for Thursday's scheduled news, Research In Motion (RIMM) is reporting its fiscal first-quarter results after the closing bell, and Wall Street is expecting a loss of a penny per share for the three months ended in May on revenue of $3.11 billion.

The problems of the BlackBerry maker are well-documented as it's fallen well behind competitors like Apple (AAPL) and Google (GOOG) in the smartphone space and failed to find success with its Playbook tablet. The stock is down nearly 70% in the past year, hitting a 52-week low of $8.83 during Tuesday's session.



On May 29, the company said it expects to report an operating loss for the first quarter, citing "lower volumes and highly competitive pricing dynamics in the marketplace" that it anticipates will results in a "challenging" financial performance over the next few quarters while it builds up to the planned launch of the BlackBerry 10 later this year.

Research In Motion has hired bankers to help it examine its strategic options but few investors seem to be betting on a buyout judging by the share price, which got whacked on Monday after Morgan Stanley lowering its rating on the stock to sell with a $7 price target.

UBS, which has a neutral rating and an $11.50 price target on the stock, is anticipating a loss of 23 cents a share from RIM on revenue of $2.4 billion. The firm sees the company's cash balance as an emerging risk ahead of the BlackBerry 10 launch and it's not hopeful a white knight will gallop in and save the day.

"[W]e continue to believe RIMM's primary focus should be on cutting costs (supply chain consolidation, head count reduction, reduced opex) and narrowing its focus to serve predominantly its enterprise subs," UBS said on Tuesday. "With some stability in ops we believe RIM then has a shot to seriously contemplate alternatives such as partnerships, licensing, and M&A. In the current state of affairs we remain skeptical of M&A, as any buyer is likely to be wary of catching a 'falling knife' and price convergence (between buyer and seller) seems tough."

Check out TheStreet's quote page for Research In Motion for year-to-date share performance, analyst ratings, earnings estimates and much more.



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