Markets & Finance

Jeffries Cuts Best Buy

Jefferies cuts Best Buy (BBY) to hold from buy.

Analyst Donald Trott notes fourth-quarter earnings per share matched consensus, but other factors hit stock 6%.

The company says management elected to expense stock-based compensation throughout the year rather than wait for the second half, which is expected to penalize fiscal 2006 (ending February) earnings per share by 17 cents.

He notes earnings per share will also be hit by 3 cents due to a dilutive accounting change for convertible debentures. He also cites low single-digit older store first-quarter sales guidance, decline in the average selling price of flat-screen HDTV sets, and a shift to a lower margin sales mix.

Trott cuts $3.26 fiscal 2006 (ending February) earnings per share estimate to $3.05 a share. He cuts his $60 6-month target to $48 to $53.

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