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Merrill Upgrades Cognos to 'Buy'

Merrill Lynch upgraded Cognos (COGN) to buy from neutral.

Analyst Scott Phillips says the recent stock price weakness provides an attractive entry point. He thinks the first quarter is proceeding well based on field checks. Phillips believes the company is likely to meet or beat his $0.09 first quarter earnings per share estimate on $117 million in revenue. He also thinks the company is experiencing positive momentum from its Series 7 release. He believes Cognos has successfully dealt with issues that caused revenue shortfalls in early 2001. He sees $0.68 fiscal 2003 (Feb.) EPS, and $0.85 for fiscal 2004. He rates the shares as long-term strong buy.

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