Markets & Finance

UBS Warburg Upgrades Symantec to 'Buy'

UBS Warburg upgraded Symantec (SYMC) to buy from neutral.

Analyst Jordan Klein says discussions at an analyst meeting about an extra week being added to the first quarter, and higher-than-expected operating expenditures in the first half of fiscal 2004 created some confusion among investors, and led to an 18% one-day drop in the stock price.

Based on the company's comments at its meeting, Klein says he is keeping his $1.76 fiscal 2003 (March) earnings per share estimate, but is trimming the $2.03 fiscal 2004 estimate to $1.96, and the $2.27 fiscal 2005 estimate to $2.17. He also cut the $50 target to $48.

Klein views Friday's sell-off as excessive given he has yet to find any changes in Symantec's fundamental business that would warrant roughly a $1.2 billion cut in the company's market value.

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