Citrix Systems jumps on bullish outlook

Citrix Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CTXS) popped up 26 percent Thursday after CS First Boston boosted its 12-month share price target on the stock to $145 from $83. The brokerage said the Internet software maker was positioned to significantly exceed current Wall Street expectations.

Shares of Citrix shot up 21 to 102 3/4 from Wednesday's close. Shares have been rising since the company skipped past analysts' estimates in its third quarter.

Analyst Wendell Laidley said in a research note he was reiterating his strong buy rating on the stock after meeting with the head of Citrix's iBusiness unit. Laidley said fourth quarter 1999 was tracking slightly ahead of expectations for $114 million in revenue and the Wall Street earnings consensus of 37 cents a share.

Medium- to long-term outlook is "improving dramatically" based on the strength of its ASP business, he said. Citrix supplies software for ASPs, or Application Service Providers, allowing companies to rent software and services rather than having to buy and manage them in-house.

Laidley said he was bullish based on the company's position in an exploding market, robust product cycle, abundant design wins and "potential for significant upside relative to estimates."

Citrix was also initiated with a "strong buy" rating from Dain Rauscher Wessels on November 12.

Reuters contributed to this report.