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Lehman Cuts Rating on Symbol Tech

Lehman Brothers downgraded Symbol Technologies (SBL) to buy from strong buy.

Analyst Jeffrey Kessler says the company's end markets are deteriorating. He says retail capital spending is falling, and fears surrounding negative preannouncements -- from logistics providers like UPS and FedEx to wireless-device makers like Palm -- cause him to question how long the company can buck trends surrounding its markets. Kessler cut his $1.32 2001 EPS estimate to $1.25, and trimmed his $1.85 2002 estimate to $1.75. The analyst thinks that until there's some relief in the economy, the stock's multiple may contract back to the bottom of its three-year P/E range of 23-25 times and 40-45 times his estimate, indicating a risk to the $29-$31 target-price range.

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