|11:31 EDT||FNSR, OCLR, JNPR, OPLK, CIEN||Finisar plummets after profit, gross margin outlook trail estimates |
Shares of Finisar (FNSR), which provides optical subsystems and components for telecommunication applications, are sinking after the company’s first quarter profit and gross margin outlook trailed analysts’ consensus estimates. WHAT'S NEW: Last night, Finisar reported fourth quarter earnings per share of 36c and revenue of $306M, compared to the consensus views of 38c and $303.2M, respectively. The company said Q4 adjusted gross margins decreased to 34.2% from 37.2%. Finisar attributed the decline in Q4 adjusted gross margin primarily to the impact of the full three months of the annual price reductions for telecom products, as well as the impact of the u2t acquisition whose products carry a lower gross margin than the corporate average. WHAT’S NOTABLE: Finisar forecast Q1 EPS of 30c-34c, far short of the consensus of 41c. Q1 revenue was seen at $320M-$335M, versus consensus of $316.96M. The company expects its gross margin issue to last beyond the current quarter. It attributes the reduction in gross margin to the product mix with lower margin wireless products, noting that it sold "a lot more" wireless transceivers for wireless applications than originally expected. Finisar noted that the wireless products have lower than average gross margins and that it will continue to pursue the "wireless opportunity" in spite of lower margins. Finisar sees its product mix in the near term to be relatively similar to what it is seeing in this quarter. ANALYST REACTION: This morning, analyst commentary was mixed. Research firms Piper Jaffray and Raymond James both said weakness in Finisar was a buying opportunity, however each lowered their respective price targets on the shares. Another firm, Craig-Hallum, downgraded Finisar to Hold from Buy. PRICE ACTION: In late morning trading, Finisar fell $5.46, or about 21.5%, to $19.80 on nearly eight times its average daily trading volume. Despite today’s pull back, the stock has gained approximately 35% over the past twelve months. OTHERS TO WATCH: Other companies that provide telecommunication components include Oplink Communications (OPLK), Oclaro (OCLR), Ciena (CIEN), and Juniper Networks (JNPR).