IBM Delivers on Earnings and Maintains Long-Term Goals

IBM logoInternational Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) has reported earnings for its fourth quarter of $5.39 per share before items and $29.3 billion in revenue. Sales were down 1% from a year ago but are said to be flat if adjusted for currency. Thomson Reuters had consensus estimates of $5.25 EPS and $29.09 billion in revenue. Gross margin came in up 1.8 points at 51.8%.

IBM's guidance is for earnings of at least $16.70 per share in 2013, but we have the Thomson Reuters consensus at $16.63 EPS. IBM said its free cash flow was $9.5 billion, up $0.6 billion from a year ago.

As a reminder, IBM is the largest DJIA component by far, so if its gains hold up then the DJIA should have a handy jump on a static basis for Wednesday morning. Other key points are as follows:

  • Software revenue up 3%, up 4% adjusting for currency.
  • Services revenue down 2%, down 1% adjusting for currency.
  • Systems and Technology revenue down 1%, up 4% excluding RSS: System z mainframe up 56 percent.
  • Services backlog was flat at $140 billion, but that would have been up $1 billion adjusting for currency.
  • Fourth-quarter revenues in the Americas unit were flat at $12.5 billion, but they were up 1% if adjusting for currency from the 2011 period.
  • Revenue from the "growth markets" rose 7%. Revenues in the BRIC countries rose 11%, but would have been up by 14% if adjusting for currency.

As we expected, CEO Ginny Rometty maintained her long-term guidance for IBM by saying, "We are well on track toward our long-term roadmap for operating EPS of at least $20 in 2015."

IBM's closing price was up 0.8% to $196.08 today, compared to a 52-week range of $181.85 to $211.79 and to a consensus target of $222.23 on the stock. We currently show shares up more than 3% at $202 in the after-hours trading session.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Earnings, Technology, Technology Companies Tagged: featured, IBM
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