WDC Sinks 11% In Pre-Market On Earnings Outlook Miss

Shares of Western Digital were trading nearly 11% down in pre-market trading on Thursday after the company’s 1Q earnings outlook disappointed. The hard-disk drive manufacturer’s 1Q adjusted EPS guidance range of $0.45-$0.65 lagged way behind the analysts’ forecast of $1.06. The revenue outlook of $3.7-$3.9 billion also fell short of Street estimates of $4.17 billion.

During its 4Q earnings conference call on August 5, Western Digital’s (WDC) CFO Bob Eulau said, “We are somewhat challenged in the near-term as a result of the uncertainty of the pandemic and being in the midst of a global economic contraction.”

RBC Capital analyst Mitch Steves lowered the stock’s price target to $57 (28.2% upside potential) from $70 but reiterated a Buy rating. He said WDC’s Q4 results were strong but “guidance for Q1 anticipates gross margin declines amid COVID-19 related supply chain issues and a weaker demand environment.”

Nonetheless, the company reported better-than-expected 4Q results. Its adjusted EPS of $1.23 beat analysts’ expectations by a penny and improved from the year-ago quarter’s EPS of $0.17. Revenues rose 18% to $4.29 billion year-over-year.

Overall, WDC has a Moderate Buy analyst consensus. The average price target of $55.70 implies an upside potential of 25.3%. (See WDC stock analysis on TipRanks).

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