Markets & Finance

First Albany Lowers to Neutral (CRM) posts 4 cents, vs. 1 cent, second-quarter earnings per share on a 77% rise in revenue as paying subscribers rose 83%. First Albany downgraded the stock to neutral from buy.

Analyst Mark Murphy says second quarter was good, with $71.9 million revenue above $71.6 million consensus, and 4 cents EPS in line. He notes 41,000 net subscriber adds were above 37,000 published consensus, but well below most optimistic whisper expectations.

Murphy believes the shares are near the top of a trading range, and lofty investor expectations for net subscriber adds will have to recalibrate lower based upon guidance. He also cites the decision to invest more heavily will prevent margins from expanding as quickly as previously thought, and npricing may decline based upon larger deals and volume discounts.

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