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Baird Ups Cisco Systems to Outperform from Neutral

Robert W. Baird upgraded Cisco Systems (CSCO) to outperform from neutral, citing the networking equipment maker's recently announced quarterly results.

Cisco posted 22 cents earnings per share (EPS) during the second quarter, compared to 17 cents EPS in the year ago quarter. It expects third quarter sales to rise 10% to 12%.

Analyst Kenneth Muth says the EPS came out better than expected. He says the management provided favorable third quarter guidance and positive order momentum commentary. He would buy the stock, as he believes it represents good potential rewards for the risk, and he expects revenue in the second half of 2006 to drive upside to the stock. He thinks the company is well-positioned for next-generation communications trends across global markets. He raises his $12.01 fiscal year 2006 (ending July) EPS estimate to $1.04 and has a $23 stock price target.

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