Tuesday February 27, 10:54 am Eastern Time Software Firms Fall After Estimates Cut NEW YORK (Reuters) - Shares in the world's largest software vendors, including Microsoft Corp. and Oracle Corp., were down on Tuesday after two key analysts cut their earnings estimates for the group, citing the U.S. economic slowdown and continued weakness in technology spending.
Goldman Sachs' Tom Berquist said he was cutting a host of software companies, including Microsoft (NasdaqNM:MSFT - news), Oracle (NasdaqNM:ORCL - news), PeopleSoft Inc. (NasdaqNM:PSFT - news) and electronic-commerce giants Ariba Inc. (NasdaqNM:ARBA - news) and Commerce One Inc. (NasdaqNM:CMRC - news).
He also cut the No.1 supply chain management software vendor, i2 Technologies Inc. (NasdaqNM:ITWO - news), whose software helps businesses manage their inventory and buying processes.
I2 was down $4-1/2, or more than 12 percent, to $31. Microsoft was down 3/4 at $60-5/16, while shares in Oracle, the No. 1 database software company, were down $1-1/8, or around 5 percent, to $22.
``We basically took down our estimates across the entire sector,'' Berquist said.
Banc of America Montgomery analyst Bob Austrian said he was cutting his estimates on Oracle, Ariba and Commerce One, among others.
``Economic slowdown is a shock and will impair e-business software demand on margin,'' he wrote in a note to clients.
Situation w/ MSFT is company specific. Think back at the huge volume we had on S&P day, INTU was trading around $49/share... if Institutions and MFs had averaged down at $36, that would give them a strike point at 42.5 to lighten their positions. IMO that's what we're seeing.