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October 31, 1999

HP Looks at Weak Fourth Quarter

By CBR Staff Writer

The gloomy noises Hewlett-Packard Co has been making to Wall Street about its fourth quarter hit the company’s share price last week. It fell to $74.06 after reaching almost $78 during the week. Merrill Lynch & Co says HP’s guidance suggests Unix server sales could be flat year over year, less than the 3% to 5% growth expected. The knock on effect means storage could be down by 20% and HP is still trying to recover from the decision to drop its reseller agreement with EMC Corp. The brokerage figures it didn’t get much margin from the deal but it did provide a competitive advantage against Sun Microsystems Inc. Sales of PC systems should grow 5%, again less than expected. Total revenue growth is being pegged down to 6% or to $10.8bn from the 10%, $11.3bn the brokerage had been expecting.

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