Report: More Lucent Cuts Ahead?
Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU) is likely to cut expenses further, giving its earnings more upside as it squeezes out more profits, according to a research note issued today by Morgan Keegan & Company Inc.
”We believe Lucent will make unanticipated cost cuts that lead to higher than expected FY05 earnings,” writes Morgan Keegan analyst Simon Leopold. He raised his fiscal 2005 estimates for Lucent to 18 cents per share. The consensus of analysts' estimates is 17 cents per share, the report states.
Morgan Keegan says higher earnings would be “received positively by Wall Street.” Despite these observations, though, Morgan Keegan did not raise its rating on Lucent, saying the valuation on the company was “not compelling enough” to do so.
Lucent spokesman Bill Price says that, while Lucent is largely done with its corporate restructuring program, headcount could fluctuate based on routine hiring and attrition.
"We’ve completed our restructuring and we’re back to business as usual,” says Price. “We’re adding and reducing employees all the time, so it is possible through normal operations to have a net loss in employees."
Price says Lucent’s headcount currently stands at about 32,300. Lucent had 35,000 employees at the beginning of the year.
— R. Scott Raynovich, US Editor, Light Reading