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Morgan Keegan Ups Symantec to Outperform

From Standard & Poor's Equity Research

Morgan Keegan upgraded Symantec (SYMC) to outperform from market perform, noting the company's quarterly results.

Symantec posted 9 cents first quarter GAAP earnings per share (EPS) and said it sees 11 cents to 12 cents GAAP EPS in the second quarter.

Analyst Chris Tovis noted factors such as stability, better-than- expected bookings in the June quarter, and likely operating margin expansion. He says the company posted non-GAAP first quarter EPS of 24 cents which beat his 23 cents estimate and the consensus' 21 cents. Importantly, he cites growth in both deferred revenue and bookings in a traditionally weaker quarter. He raises $1.09 fiscal year 2007 (ending March) non-GAAP EPS estimates to $1.10.

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