STOCKS TO WATCH: Adobe Systems, Jabil Circuit, KLA-Tencor, Manugistics and Maxtor

4 min read

Expect the following technology stocks to be among Friday's most actively traded stocks: Adobe Systems, Jabil Circuit, KLA-Tencor, Manugistics Group and Maxtor.

  • Adobe Systems (Nasdaq: ADBE)

    Adobe Systems shares should be on the move Friday after it easily topped analyst estimates in the fourth quarter.

    After market close Thursday, the vendor of graphics and publishing software reported net income of 46 cents per share, excluding one-time events. First Call's survey of a dozen analysts predicted a profit of 42 cents per share for the quarter ended Dec. 3.

    Also Thursday, Adobe said company co-founder Charles Geschke would step down as president at the end of March. John Warnock, chairman, CEO and co-founder of Adobe, will add the presidential role to his current duties. Geschke will remain on the board, the company said.

    Including restructuring and other charges, investment gains and losses from venture programs, an in-process research and development write-off, and a gain from the sale of a corporate facility, Adobe in the fourth quarter earned $97.4 million, or 76 cents per share.

    Fourth quarter revenue rose to $281.8 million, from $260.9 million in the previous quarter and $246.7 million in the year-ago period. Demand for Web-related tools drove the company's growth, said John E. Warnock, chairman and CEO.

    Operating profit in the fourth quarter rose to $81.9 million, from $72.5 million a year ago.

    For the full year, Adobe earned $237.8 million, including $259.9 million of operating income, on $1.02 billion in revenue. The company has growth targets of 20 percent for revenue and 30 percent for operating profit next year, Warnock said.

    Last quarter, Adobe topped analysts' estimates when it raked in $57.2 million, or 80 cents a share, on sales of $261 million. It also announced a 2-for-1 stock split.

    Shares of Adobe rose to 69 in after-hours trading. The stock closed Thursday's regular trading at 63 3/4, up 1 7/8 for the session.

  • Jabil Circuit (NYSE:JBL)

    Jabil should make some decent gains Friday after it edged past estimates in its first quarter.

    After market close Thursday, the contract electronics manufacturer posted fiscal first quarter net income of $31.2 million, or 34 cents per share, excluding a one-time expense. First Call's survey of 25 analysts predicted a profit of 33 cents per share.

    Including a $5.2 million acquisition-related charge, Jabil earned $26.5 million, or 29 cents per share. First quarter revenue rose to $690 million, a 29 percent sequential gain and a 39 percent improvement from $495 million in the year-ago period, when Jabil earned $20 million, or 24 cents per share.

    "We are pleased with the results for our fiscal first quarter and with our positioning for an outstanding fiscal 2000," said Timothy L. Main, Jabil's president. "We are concurrently ramping new customers and programs across all of our facilities. We are very pleased to see continued strong organic growth and are pleased to have immediate contributions from our two recent acquisitions. We are also encouraged by our diversified business model of over 30 meaningful customers as we enter this fiscal year."

    Shares of Jabil closed Thursday's regular trading at 71 1/2, a gain of 6 11/16 for the session. Among 27 analysts polled by Zack's Investment Research, 13 maintain the equivalent of "moderate buy" ratings on Jabil, 11 recommend it as a "strong buy", and three have "hold" advisories on the stock. In other earnings related news Thursday:

  • KLA-Tencor Corp. (Nasdaq: KLAC)

    The maker of inspection tools for the computer-chip industry said it will split its stock 2-for-1, effective Jan. 18. KLA-Tencor rose 2 1/2 to 92 7/8 at Thursday's close.

  • Manugistics Group Inc. (Nasdaq: MANU)

    Manugisitics shares should slump Friday after it fell short of analyst estimates in its third quarter. The maker of enterprise software posted a fiscal third quarter net loss of $4.8 million, or 17 cents per share.

    Published research forecasts ranged from losses of 5 cents to 11 cents per share.

    Shares of Manugistics fell to 21 1/2 in after-hours trading. The stock closed Thursday's regular market session at 24 1/2.

    Third quarter revenue of $35.8 million represents a 17 percent decline from a year earlier. License fees of $14.6 million were down 5 percent year-over-year, but up 35 percent from the second quarter. Service revenue slid 23 percent to $21.2 million from $27.7 million.

  • Maxtor Corp. (Nasdaq: MXTR)

    Maxtor should be on the rise Friday after telling Wall Street it expects to report a net loss per share of 18 cents or less, compared to the Wall Street consensus estimate of a net loss of 45 cents per share for the fourth quarter.

    Unit shipments and revenue will also be up significantly from the 5.9 million units and $589 million in sales it reported for the third fiscal quarter, the company said in a statement.

    In addition to strong demand, Maxtor said it was benefiting from the price increases it initiated earlier in the quarter.

    Its shares closed up 3/32 to 5 17/32 Thursday.

    Sergio Non contributed to this report.