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Check Point Hammered On Outlook; Qualys Jumps On Price-Target Hikes

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Investors on Wednesday hammered one computer software security vendor, Check Point Software Technologies ( CHKP ), while rewarding rival Qualys ( QLYS ) in the wake of earnings reports for both.

Check Point plunged 11% to 104.23 on the stock market today , after it reported earnings on Tuesday. Qualys was up nearly 6% to 55.95, after its report, also on Tuesday.

BTIG Research, Cowen & Co. and Stephens downgraded Check Point to neutral. JPMorgan hiked its price target on Qualys to 70 from 55, while RBC Capital raised its to 59 from 50.

Qualys reported third-quarter adjusted profit of 21 cents a share, up 61% from a year earlier, with revenue rising 17% to $59.5 million.

"Results were strong with revenue exceeding the high-end of guidance, but profitability was the highlight of the quarter with record operating margin and 9-cent beat," said Matthew Hedberg, a RBC Capital analyst in a report.

Check Point reported third-quarter earnings and revenue above views but guidance disappointed.

"While investors saw another quarter of improving margins and good EPS growth, up 15% year-over-year, the lack of investment looks to be taking a toll on growth, as billings growth trended down to 1% and product revenues fell 6%," said Keith Weiss, a Morgan Stanley analyst in a report.

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Check Point said it earned $1.30 a share, up 15% from a year ago, with revenue rising 6% to $455 million. Analysts expected Check Point to report earnings of $1.24 a share on sales of $449.2 million.

Check Point forecast fourth-quarter revenue in a range of $485 million to $525 million. That's $4.9 million below the consensus at the midpoint.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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