). The toolmaker raised its first-quarter earnings per share guidance from a range of 49 cents to 51 cents to a range of 63 cents to 67 cents.
Analyst Sam Darkatsh says he was at high end of the prior 49 cents to 51 cents guidance range. He notes the biggest lift seems to be coming from home centers and mass merchants due to robust demand. Industrial tools experienced their second consecutive quarter of positive organic growth, aided by the strengthening economy, while Security Solutions gained share in service-related business. Darkatsh says Stanley is experiencing favorable foreign exchange effects in in Europe and Asia. He believes Stanley is passing most of the higher steel prices it is experiencing on to consumers.
The analyst raised his earnings per share estimates for the first quarter from 51 cents to 65 cents and for all of 2004 from $2.55 to $2.69. He maintains his $44.50 price target and strong buy rating on the shares.