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November 12, 1997updated 03 Sep 2016 7:30pm

HP’S PRINTER BUSINESS TOOK A SEPTEMBER BATH

By CBR Staff Writer

Putting spin around its new consumer and server product strategies is one thing but Merrill Lynch & Co’s Steve Milunovich says Hewlett-Packard Co’s printer business is ailing. We think laser really is weak while ink jet is healthier, he says, pointing to improved sales of Lexmark International’s Optra S laser line as one reason why HP is suffering. Sales of HP’s LaserJet printers were off by 17% in September – more than the 13% decline in the general laser printer market – while ink jet growth slowed from 43% in August to 8% in September. Canon Inc and Epson Inc also gained ink jet share. New ink jet offerings might improve HP’s October results, Milunovich muses. He’s looking for HP to report $0.80 per share in its fourth quarter financial report on November 17 and says HP’s badly needing a new LaserJet 5 series expected in this month.

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