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Websense shares fall after hours on weak forecast

The Associated Press

Websense Inc.'s shares sank in after-hours trading Tuesday after the data security company reported a disappointing fourth-quarter profit and issued a weak forecast.

The San Diego-based company has been struggling for some time to meet market forecasts. And investors were looking for some good news after it named a new CEO earlier this month and said to expect better-than-expected fourth-quarter billings.

Websense reported after the market closed that it earned $3.8 million, or 10 cents per share, for its fourth quarter. That is compared with net income of $10.4 million, or 27 cents per share, in the same quarter of the prior year. On an adjusted basis, it earned 28 cents per share, falling short of the 32 cents per share that analysts polled by FactSet had anticipated.

Its revenue fell to $91.7 million from $92.7 million on weaker performance in is appliance, software and service units but still exceeded market expectations of $91.2 million.

Websense said it expects to earn between 15 and 19 cents per share on an adjusted basis for its first quarter on revenue between $84 million and $87 million. Analysts were expecting earnings of 35 cents per share on revenue of $89.9 million.

It forecast earnings between 78 and 93 cents per share for the full year on revenue between $351 million and $361 million. That falls far short of the $1.54 per share that analyst had forecast on revenue of $367.3 million.

Shares fell 63 cents, or nearly 4 percent, to $15.50 after hours on the news. Its stock fell 44 cents to close regular trading at $16.13.