Bloomberg News

Baidu Drops Most in Two Months on Profit Growth Outlook

February 17, 2012

Feb. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Baidu Inc., owner of China’s largest online search engine, sank the most in almost two months after Morgan Stanley said the stock will decline over the next 60 days.

Baidu’s American depositary receipts dropped 4.5 percent to $135.50 by 11:12 a.m. in New York, the biggest intraday slide since Dec. 21.

Baidu’s shares will fall in “absolute terms” over the next two months, Richard Ji, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Morgan Stanley, said in a research note today, citing “moderate” earnings growth rate for 2012.

Fourth-quarter net income rose 77 percent from a year earlier to 2.05 billion yuan ($326.3 million), Baidu said yesterday. That beat the average estimate of 2 billion yuan of 10 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News.

Beijing-based Baidu expected first-quarter sales to rise to 4.2 billion yuan to 4.3 billion yuan, according to its statement yesterday. That compared with the average forecast of 4.23 billion yuan of 12 analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

--Editor: Marie-France Han

To contact the reporter on this story: Belinda Cao in New York at lcao4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Emma O’Brien at eobrien6@bloomberg.net


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