The attack dogs, sensing the wounded, are feasting.
is getting hammered in the morning after the company's earnings warning yesterday and several downgrades from analysts earlier today.
At last gasp, the stock was reeling, down $9.50 to $21.88, 30% loss, and it's lately trading at its lowest levels since February 1998. It was easily the most active on the
New York Stock Exchange, with 29.6 million shares traded.
Analysts have taken a blunt object to Lucent after the company cut its growth outlook for the fiscal fourth quarter. The company said lower-than-expected optical sales and declining sales in your garden-variety telephone circuit-switching equipment were responsible for the expected shortfall.
In a note, analysts at
W. R. Hambrecht
point out that the loss of market share in fiber optics to leading names like
are hurting Lucent. (Not that the market is differentiating between anything this morning -- those stocks are getting creamed also.)
And since technology is moving away from traditional switching, other analysts are hardly optimistic.
The roll call goes like this:
cut the company to hold from outperform;
Credit Suisse First Boston
dropped it to buy from strong buy; and
Morgan Stanley Dean Witter
cut it to outperform from strong buy.
cut earnings estimates but left its rating alone;
maintained its neutral rating, but resignedly said it expects another downward adjustment to guidance when the company reports results Oct. 24.
Earnings for the fourth quarter are expected to come in around 17 cents to 18 cents a share, lower than the 27-cent
First Call/Thomson Financial