Symantec (SYMC) fell on Thursday after Jefferies downgraded the computer security software provider on views that guidance will be lowered.
John DiFucci, a Jefferies analyst, downgraded Symantec to neutral and lowered his price target to 23 from 30.
“With near double-digit growth implied for fiscal Q4 and mid-to-high single digit growth guided to thereafter, we believe these numbers will inevitably be lowered,” DiFucci said in a note to clients. “While we believe Symantec is well-positioned for secular themes such as vendor consolidation and cloud, we believe current guidance is unachievable and the stock will rerate lower upon investor realization.”
Shares in Symantec fell 3.7% to 26.50 on the stock market today.
Mountain View, Calif.-based Symantec reports fiscal third-quarter earnings on Jan. 31. Analysts estimate 38% profit growth to 44 cents and 16% revenue growth to $1.27 billion, including recent acquisitions.
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Symantec has been making acquisitions to spur growth. Symantec acquired Blue Coat Systems in 2016 for $4.65 billion. Symantec also purchased LifeLock, a provider of consumer identity-theft protection services, for $2.3 billion.
Shares in Symantec are roughly flat from a year ago and the stock is trading below its 50-day moving average. Qualys (QLYS) is the top-rated stock in IBD’s Computer Software-Security group, which is ranked No. 116 out of 197 industry groups.
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