BEA Systems Shares Get Sheared

The stock is downgraded after light revenue guidance.
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Shares of

BEA Systems

(BEAS)

plunged Friday, a day after the business software maker served up a light first-quarter outlook.

The stock was recently off $1.32, or 10%, to $11.88.

In a conference call with investors late Thursday following its

strong fourth-quarter revenue report, BEA said it expected first-quarter revenue of $350 million to $364 million. The midpoint of that range was below Thomson Financial's analyst estimate of $364.5 million.

The news sparked moves on Friday by a couple of Wall Street houses: Jefferies maintained its buy rating on the stock but lowered its price target to $15 from $17 and cut its 2008 EPS estimates to 59 cents to 65 cents a share. UBS cut its rating on the stock to neutral and cut its target price to $14.

BEA didn't release earnings results for the fourth quarter, due to its ongoing stock options review. The company said the outcome of that review will require changing the accounting of certain option grants, which will hurt its results for certain periods.