) to reduce from neutral.
Analyst Saul Rubin says a first quarter recovery from year-ago levels is not quite what it's cracked up to be, and he questions the sustainability of certain earnings per share base elements. Rubin says a first quarter recovery resulted from easy comparisons. He thinks Ford is stronger than he once thought, but he still sees the car maker moving backward vs. the competition.
Rubin raised his 55 cents 2003 earnings per share estimate to 70 cents, and upped the 65 cents 2004 estimate to 70 cents, but he notes no improvement in 2004 over 2003. He raised his $6.50 12-month target to $8.50 on a reassessment of earnings power.