Lucent Technologies (LU) threw Wall Street for a loop when it announced it expects first-quarter earnings to fall below estimates. The telecommunications equipment giant attributed the shortfall to flat revenue growth caused by changes in customer purchasing habits, lower software revenues and lower-than-expected gross margins. The company said it expects to report earnings in the range of 36 cents to 39 cents a share, compared with 48 cents a year ago. The 29-analyst estimate from First Call/Thomson Financial was for 54 cents. Lucent said it expects revenues to be in the range of $9.8 billion to $9.9 billion, flat with the year-ago period.
The expected shortfall marks a sharp departure from the company's excellent earnings track record. Until now, Lucent has beat earnings forecasts in every quarter since it was spun off from
in 1996. Further
decision this morning, to up the stock's target price to 95 from 90, looks unusual in light of the recent news.
For additional coverage of Lucent's earnings
warning, check out a separate story from the
joint newsroom. Also see
past coverage of
Lucent including an in-depth look at the company's
Inflows to equity funds totaled $2 billion for the week ended yesterday, according to
AMG Data Services
. International equity funds reported redemptions from all emerging & developed regions. Taxable bond outflows totaled $228 million.
In other post-close news (
Earnings estimates from First Call/Thomson Financial; earnings reported on a diluted basis unless otherwise specified.
Earnings/revenue reports and previews
posted a fourth-quarter loss from continuing operations of 33 cents including a charge, wider than the single-analyst estimate of a loss of 10 cents and lower than the year-ago earnings of 16 cents a share.
said it sees a fourth-quarter loss of 6 cents to 9 cents a share. The four-analyst estimate was for a loss of 1 cent a share.
posted second-quarter earnings of 13 cents a share, beating the three-analyst estimate of 11 cents and the year-ago loss of 15 cents.
said it expects first-quarter earnings to beat analyst estimates. The company said it sees earnings between 56 cents to 58 cents, better than the single-analyst estimate of 46 cents a share.
said its fully taxed diluted earnings per share for the third quarter were 51 cents a share, compared with the year-ago 36 cents. The two-analyst estimate called for earnings of 54 cents.
said its December same-store sales fell 1%.
said its same-store sales rose 5% in December.
said it expects first-quarter earnings to match or narrowly exceed estimates. The seven-analyst estimate calls for earnings of 35 cents a share.
Systems & Computer Technology
said it expects a loss of about 18 cents to 22 cents a share for the first-quarter, wider than the four-analyst estimate of a loss of 3 cents a share.
warned fourth-quarter results will fall below expectations due to delays in closing year-end license business and customer buying decisions over Y2K concerns. The company said it expects results to be break-even to a loss of 3 cents a share. The lone-analyst estimate called for earnings of 19 cents a share.
Mergers, acquisitions and joint ventures
said it received approval from federal officials for a 20-year airport improvement plan in the Dominican Republic that is expected to generate about $2 billion in revenues for the company.
said it will become a preferred strategic supplier to
Offerings and stock actions
said it would increase its common stock repurchase program to $100 million.