Rob Black's Tech Stock Report

by: Rob Black

Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) priced $2 billion of convertible senior notes and announced plans to repurchase an additional $1.5 billion of common stock. While a new debt offering was widely expected by Symantec, yesterday’s announcement provides important new specifics about the company’s plans.

The initial view on Symantec’s offering is positive as it resolves some of the uncertainty around the company’s capital structure and also bolsters the company’s domestic cash reserves ahead of the company’s existing $500 million convertible likely being put to the company in August of this year. At 5/31/06, analysts estimate Symantec’s domestic cash balance at approximately $700-800 million.

Sources all over Taiwan confirm that Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) is going to launch more AMD (NYSE:AMD) based systems like mobile and desktop systems. You can hide products until launch day, but you have to order parts some time, and there are no secrets in Taiwan. Either way, expect another big bang announcement from Dell by the end of the year.

Sun Microsystems (NASDAQ:SUNW) CFO Mike Lehman reiterated the company's plans to cut between 4,000 and 5,000 jobs as part of a company restructuring plan that aims to return Sun to consistent profitability. Speaking at the Bear Stearns Technology Conference, Lehman said Sun still expects that it will be able to report an operating profit of 4% of revenue by the fourth quarter of its fiscal 2007, with a long-term goal of annual operating income of 10% of revenue. Lehman wouldn't put a timeline on when Sun might reach the 10% figure, nor did he give any exact earnings or revenue forecasts for the computer-server and software maker.

Prudential cuts their 2006-07 estimates on Intel (NASDAQ:INTC). They trimmed their target to $14 from $15. The firm is saying recent checks in Asia indicate that the company is struggling to clear inventories of its products in the channel. Firm thinks that this will have three negative impacts to the co's EPS: 1) lower revs due to lower prices and ASPs, 2) lower fixed cost absorbtion, and 3) lower fab loadings. Firm believes that this increases the risk of inventory writedowns in 2nd quarter or 3rd quarter.

RBC upgraded Emulex (NYSE:ELX) to Outperform with a $20 target. The firm is saying they believe the recent negative revision in forward guidance is proving appropriately conservative as 4 Gbps Fibre Channel programs accelerate.

Global sales of WLAN devices were unaffected by the traditional low season in the first half of 2006, with this year's peak season to come in the second half as expected. Big winner could be Broadcom (BRCM) as they now see the upturn in demand will continue and has placed more foundry wafer orders in order to catch up with demand.

Piper Jaffray updated sales at Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) this quarter: Apple iPod sales could be light, but strong Mac sales that result from full availability of the MacBook Pro and the launch of the MacBook are expected.

IBM (NYSE:IBM) is almost ready to release the long-awaited version of its DB2 database system, code-named Viper, which could put the software and services giant a step ahead of its biggest rival, Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL), the market share leader in databases.