HP Stumbles on Weaker PC and Corporate Demand Before Split

Hewlett-Packard Co.’s earnings outlook fell short of estimates before a breakup designed to improve growth prospects.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.bloomberg.com

Sales declined across most divisions in the fiscal third quarter — in personal computers, services, printers and software — fueled by continued weakness in the global personal-computer market. For the fourth quarter — the last before the separation in November — profit before certain items will be $0.92 to $0.98 a share, Hewlett-Packard said Thursday, below analysts’ average projection for $1.  “We faced a challenging macroeconomic and IT spending environment in the quarter,” Chief Executive Officer Meg Whitman said on a call with analysts. In the PC and printer market, which represents around half of Hewlett-Packard’s business today, the company sees “a difficult business environment for several quarters to come,” she said.  –  By creating two businesses — one offering technology and services to businesses, and another selling PCs, printers and other gadgets to consumers — Whitman is seeking to make them more responsive to market changes. That’s also making them more vulnerable to swings in demand, as seen in today’s earnings results. PC shipments fell 9.5% in the second quarter, and companies are spending less on software and services.

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