Raymond James Upgrades Witness Systems

Analyst Mike Latimore says the software company is benefiting from a weak U.S. dollar, healthy business, and conservative guidance

Raymond James upgrades software company Witness Systems (WITS ) to strong buy from outperform.

Analyst Mike Latimore says industry checks indicate workforce optimization segment remains healthy, a bright spot within contact center software market. He thinks the sales cycle may be shortening somewhat, and the company's more thorough product offering following its Blue Pumpkin acquisition is bringing more deals across the finish line.

While he doesn't believe the company is benefiting from a weak U.S. dollar in 2005 as it did in 2004, he says business is healthy, and the company has remained conservative on guidance (the company sees 60 cents to 62 cents 2005 earnings per share).

Latimore maintains his 60 cents 2005 earnings per share and 81 cents estimate. He keeps his $24 target.

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