HP previews strong fourth-quarter earnings

In a sneak peek of earnings reports scheduled for November 23, company says while revenue is down, earnings per share are up 15 percent from a year ago.

On the heels of announcing its acquisition of 3Com , Hewlett-Packard also gave a sneak peek at its fourth-quarter earnings.

Though not scheduled to officially announce earnings until November 23, HP said Wednesday it expects to report revenue of $30.8 billion for the quarter on earnings of 99 cents per share. (Excluding one-time charges, it would have earned $1.14 per share.) While revenue was down 8 percent compared to the same quarter a year ago, earnings were up from 84 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Analysts were expecting earnings of $1.12 per share and revenue of $29.8 billion.

"Solid execution drove exceptional performance for HP this quarter, fueled by significant growth in China," HP Chairman and CEO Mark Hurd said in a statement Wednesday. "We are delivering on our strategy and are well positioned going into 2010."

The company also raised its outlook for 2010. For the first quarter, HP is estimating $29.6 to $29.9 billion in revenue, and earnings between $1.03 and $1.05 per share excluding 13 cents per share of after-tax costs and charges related to restructuring and acquisitions.

About the author

Erica Ogg is a CNET News reporter who covers Apple, HP, Dell, and other PC makers, as well as the consumer electronics industry. She's also one of the hosts of CNET News' Daily Podcast. In her non-work life, she's a history geek, a loyal Dodgers fan, and a mac-and-cheese connoisseur.


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