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Eddy Elfenbein submits: Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) reports today. I hope this company can manage its business as well as it manages Wall Street. Investors are in love with this stock.

Wall Street’s earnings consensus, so we’re told, is 44 cents a share. Please. HPQ should easily report, I’ll say, 46 cents a share. The crowd wants permission to love the stock some more, however, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the stock pull back in the next few days.

I’m always skeptical of turnarounds. Not that companies don’t turn around. They do. But in HPQ’s case, it’s still HPQ. Once they stop improving their margins (hey, you lay off 15,000 people, your margins will improve, too), how fast can the company grow?
Ten percent tops.

I expect to see that sales rose about 5%, and that’s probably what they’ll do next quarter. This is not a great business to be in. There are only so many profiles you can read about CEO Mark Hurd.

HPQ 1-yr Chart

Source: Can HP Keep Up The Magic? (HPQ)