Hewlett-Packard cuts high end of its forecasts

Hewlett-Packard cut the high end of its forecast for full-year profit amid falling demand for personal computers and business- technology services, underscoring the turnaround challenge facing CEO Meg Whitman.

Profit excluding certain costs will be $4.05 to $4.07 a share in the year that ends in October, the firm said.

That’s at the low end of a forecast for $4.05 to $4.10 issued in May and below the average $4.08 analyst estimate compiled by Bloomberg. Profit excluding costs was $1 a share and sales were $29.7bn in the third quarter, matching analysts’ predictions.

Under Whitman, the company is stepping up investment in research and development and revamping PC, printer and enterprise- services groups.

Sales are under pressure as competitors such as Apple siphon off demand for computing devices and rivals vie for corporate customers.

Results were also affected by global economic weakness as customers take longer to agree to purchases, chief financial officer Cathie Lesjak said.



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