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What Analysts Are Saying About IBM’s Sixteenth Straight Quarter Of Losses

April 19, 2016, 7:07 PM UTC
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IBM is having a tough time on the market on Tuesday after reporting its sixteenth straight quarter of losses.

The business technology giant has seen its revenue shrink continuously since the second quarter of 2012. Under CEO Ginni Rometty, IBM has been attempting to reposition itself as a leader in cutting edge technologies including data analytics and cloud computing through a series of high-profile acquisitions, including most recently The Weather Company and Truven Health.

But investors and analysts are concerned that IBM’s billion-dollar investments are not paying off, at least not as fast as they would like.

Here’s a roundup of what some analysts are saying after IBM’s recent earnings report.

From Mark Moskowitz, an equity analyst at Barclay’s:

We expect shares of IBM to be under pressure in the near term. Mar-Q results do not indicate a substantial improvement in fundamentals or the operating model. A bevy of one-time items and acquired revenue were not enough to drive a major EPS beat, which we think investors had been expecting even if it was low-quality. The incremental struggle remains that soft margin trends require more cost take-outs, signaling IBM’s revenue growth priorities might carry below-corporate margins.

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From Deutsche Bank Securities:

Results likely disappoint after a closer look. IBM reported better-than-expected F1Q-16 sales and EPS, and reiterated FY-16 EPS guidance. However a closer look shows results were generally of low quality, with more than half of the EPS beat coming from a tax benefit. We believe investors were expecting a beat and raise to FY-16E guidance given improving FX trends and higher sales from acquisitions, and we expect results to be viewed negatively. Given shares are trading down 5% in after-hours, we view current valuations as fairly reflecting growth challenges balanced by potential upside from new initiatives.

From Toni Sacconaghi, Jr., a senior research analyst at Bernstein:

We continue to believe that IBM needs to show that its *organic* revenue growth rate at constant currency can improve – which has not been the case in the last 5 years, despite the success of its rapidly growing strategic imperatives – in order for the company to materially re-rate and outperform.

From Sweta Killa, an analyst at Zacks Investment Research:

Investors should note that this is the company’s worst quarterly revenue seen in 14 years as new strategic business lines like cloud computing, big data and mobile security failed to make up for the slowdown in traditional business like hardware, software and services sales. However, its strategic and high growth business now accounts for 37% of total revenue given that IBM has been transforming its business from the low-margin ones such as cash registers, low-end servers and semiconductors to strategic growth areas over the past three years.

For more about IBM, watch:

From Scott Kessler, an equity analyst at S&P Global Market Intelligence:

We adjust our EPS estimates for ’16 to $13.54 from $13.46 and ’17 to $14.16 from $14.24. IBM posts Q1 non-GAAP EPS of $2.35 vs. $2.91, well above the Capital IQ consensus of $2.17 and our estimate of $2.10. However, IBM benefited from a $1 billion refund of previously paid non-U.S. taxes. Revenues fell again, by 5% (2% with neutral forex), but Strategic Imperatives were up 14% (17%)

Katy L. Huberty, Morgan Stanley managing director:

Part of our OW thesis is predicated on improved FCF conversion as IBM digests more flexible contracts with large customers and begins to convert growth in Strategic Imperatives. Our analysis suggested deferred revenue would turn positive by 4Q16 but the company achieved the improvement in 1Q16 (deferred income grew 2% Y/Y)

UBS analyst, Steven Milunovich:

“We give IBM credit for changing the narrative … still the transformation is in the third inning.”