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Symantec (SYMC) Drops After Guiding Q1 Earnings Below Street

 May 02, 2012 05:10 PM

(By Balasheshan) Security software provider Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ:SYMC) reported an increase in fourth quarter earnings due to a gain from sale of joint venture. Adjusted earnings came in-line with consensus, for the second time in the last five quarters. However, the company guided first quarter earnings below Street's view, sending its shares down 1.40% in aftermarket.

Earnings for the fourth quarter grew to $559 million or $0.76 per share from $168 million or $0.22 per share. Adjusted earnings were $283 million or $0.38 per share, compared to $297 million or $0.38 per share last year.

Revenue increased to $1.681 billion from $1.673 billion. Analysts had expected a profit of $0.38 per share on revenue of $1.68 billion.

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Deferred revenue rose 4% to $3.973 billion, while after adjusting of currency deferred revenue increased by 5%.

Consumer revenue rose to $523 million from $514 million, while security and compliance revenue increased to $503 million from $465 million. Storage and service management revenue fell to $591 million from $626 million, while services revenue declined to $64 million from $68 million.

Gross margin decreased to 82.9% from 83.9%, while adjusted gross margin declined to 84.6% from 85.8%.

Looking ahead into the first quarter, the company expects adjusted earnings of $0.37 to $0.38 per share and revenue of $1.645 billion to $1.660 billion, while Street predicts profit of $0.39 per share on revenue of $1.66 billion. Guidance assumes an exchange rate of $1.32 per Euro for the June 2012 quarter versus the actual weighted average of $1.44 and end of period rate of $1.45 per Euro.

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Deferred revenue is expected to be in the range of $3.715 billion and $3.735 billion for the first quarter, compared to $3.689 billion, up 0.7% to 1.3% as reported, and up between 2.8% and 3.4% after adjusting for currency. GAAP earnings per share are estimated between $0.18 and $0.19.

SYMC closed Wednesday's regular session down 0.12% at $16.43. The stock has been trading between $14.94 and $20.50 for the past 52 weeks.



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