Stock market recommendations: Symantec sales rise on data security concerns

Symantec Corp., symbol SYMC on Nasdaq, sells Internet security technology, including anti-virus and Internet content and email filtering software, to businesses and consumers.

Symantec is one of the stocks we cover in Stock Pickers Digest, our newsletter that covers more aggressive stock market recommendations.

In the three months ended April 1, 2011, Symantec’s earnings fell 8.0%, to $297 million from $323 million a year earlier. Earnings per share fell 5.0%, to $0.38 from $0.40, on fewer shares outstanding. These figures exclude several unusual items, including asset writedowns and restructuring costs. On this basis, the latest earnings beat the consensus estimate of $0.36 a share.

Sales rose 9.3% in the quarter, to $1.7 billion from $1.5 billion. The company gets 51% of its sales from overseas. If you disregard the positive impact of exchange rates, sales would have risen 8% in the latest quarter.

The company continues to see strong demand for its products due to rising concern about data security, particularly as more businesses switch to "cloud computing." That’s where data and software are kept on remote servers. Users access these servers over the Internet.

You can get our clear buy/sell/hold advice on Symantec and dozens of other stock market recommendations that may be appropriate for the part of your portfolio you devote to aggressive investing when you subscribe to Stock Pickers Digest. What’s more, you can get the latest issue absolutely free. Click here to learn how.

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