Symantec Stumbles on Warning

Shares of Symantec fell 19 percent Wednesday after the company warned that its December quarter results will come in below expectations.

Symantec’s September quarter results were ahead of expectations, but the company’s guidance for the current quarter — earnings of 25 cents a share on sales of $1.26 billion — was below analysts’ estimates of 27-cent earnings and $1.35 billion in revenues.

The company blamed delays in its Norton 2006 releases and increased competition for the weak guidance, but analysts were also disappointed in the single-digit sales growth in Veritas products during the companies’ first full quarter since their merger closed in early July.

Also weighing on the stock was the announced retirement of CFO Greg Myers, the second high-level departure at the company in recent months.

The broader market fared much better, with tech stocks leading the way higher despite a lackluster response to earnings reports from Symantec, EDS and Sun.

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Paul Shread
eSecurityPlanet Editor Paul Shread has covered nearly every aspect of enterprise technology in his 20+ years in IT journalism, including award-winning articles on endpoint security and virtual data centers. He wrote a column on small business technology for Time.com, and covered financial markets for 10 years, from the dot-com boom and bust to the 2007-2009 financial crisis. He holds a market analyst certification.

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