Sun Microsystems reported a second-quarter net loss of $209 million, or 28 cents per share, on sales of $3.2 billion. But after excluding one-time costs related to recent layoffs and other costs, the company posted a profit of 15 cents per share, beating analysts' expectations of a 10 cent loss, after the exclusions. (Statement)
Revenue declined almost 11 percent from the $3.6 billion in the year-ago quarter. For that same period, the company reported a net profit of $260 million, or 31 cents.
In regular trading, shares of Sun were up more than 5 percent to close at $3.99. Shares continued to rise in after-hours trading, jumping as much as 10 percent but eventually sliding back to a gain of about 5 percent. Brent Bracelin, an analyst with Pacific Crest Securities, told CNET:
Revenues and earnings did slightly better than what the street was expecting, especially after their business fell off a cliff in the September quarter. The industry has not improved since their September quarter and there has been further erosion, so for Sun to show roughly 8 percent revenue growth sequentially, and a return to profitability, shows they are doing a good job controlling expenses and bringing in revenue.
But this doesn't mean that things are about to get better for Sun. The company did not offer a forecast on the remainder of its fiscal year, a now-common practice among companies as they struggle to adapt and react to changing economics. It's no secret that enterprise spending budgets are shrinking around the world and that some of the industries hit hardest by the downturn - notably financial services - were some of Sun's biggest customers.