Juniper Networks (JNPR) shares were higher after the company reported earnings per share of 4 cents, vs. 2 cents a year ago (GAAP), on 33% revenue rise. CE Unterberg upgraded the stock to buy from market perform.
Analyst Mark Sue says Juniper reported strong fourth-quarter 2003 revenue results, up 20% sequentially and significantly ahead of his recently increased estimate of $186 million. He says results were driven by balanced demand across all product categories and an unanticipated yearend spending flush. He says with stronger business conditions, better visibility, improving operating metrics, and an enviable backlog of untapped projects such as GIG-BE, he expects Juniper to be a key beneficiary of an improving telecom spending environment.
Sue ups $806 million 2004 revenue estimate to $960 million, and his 28 cents 2004 EPS forecast to 37 cents. He has a $30 12-24 month price target on the stock.