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CIBC World Ups Check Point Software to 'Sector Outperform'

CIBC World upgraded Check Point Software (CHKP) to sector outperform from sector perform.

Analyst Shaul Eyal says the upgrade is based on strengthening macro and micro fundamentals, mitigating cash-utilization concerns and short-term catalysts. Eyal believes Check Point is well positioned to meet its highest range of revenue guidance of $114 million. He thinks a seasonally strong fourth quarter, and a slight increase in information-technology spending, could provide upside to estimates. Eyal bumped the 93 cents 2003 earnings per share estimate to 95 cents, and upped the $1.03 2004 estimate to $1.05.

He set a $1.26 2005 earnings per share estimate on revenue of $595 million. He raised the price target to $27, from $20, or 21 times the 2005 estimate.

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