Cisco beats third-quarter expectations


Cisco Systems has reported higher-than-expected profits for its fiscal third quarter. Analysts say it suggests that the networking giant is continuing its slow recovery from the economic downturn.

For the three months ended April 27th, Cisco earned $729 million, or 10 cents a share, compared with a $2.7 billion loss, or 37 cents a share, in the same quarter last year.

Sales were $4.82 billion, up 2% from $4.73 billion in the third quarter last year.

Excluding special items, the company earned $838 million, or 11 cents a share, compared with profits of $230 million, or 3 cents a share, in the third quarter of 2001. It is the third straight quarter-to-quarter increase in profits and revenues.

According to a survey by Thomson Financial/First Call, analysts were expecting profits of 9 cents a share on revenue of $4.87 billion.

Cisco president and chief executive Mr John Chambers, stated: "We are very pleased with this quarter's performance.

"The combination of our strong market position and solid execution by our team produced results that clearly indicate that Cisco is well positioned when the economy rebounds.

"Last year was a classic downturn. We took the critical steps to position ourselves for the upturn, and we are beginning to see the very positive results."

The results were released after Wall Street closed. Shares of Cisco surged nearly 10 per cent to $14.36 in after-hours trading. They closed the regular session at $13.08, up 19 cents, on the New York Stock Exchange.