Skip to main content

Goldman slaps software stocks

Lately I have parsing the Durable Goods reports (read latest post) to more precisely identify what is going on with technology hardware manufacturing.

Today Goldman Sachs released a report that focuses on the other big part of the hi-tech picture: software. Suffice to say, it wasn't pretty.

Here is a quote from the report:
"The worst of the IT-spending slowdown likely remains in front of us, as we start the clock on slashed 2009 budgets. We forecast 0 percent revenue growth for our group, below consensus at 5 percent, and 1 percent earnings growth, below Street at 2 percent."
Goldman presents a recommended list of big-name IT software stocks that they consider to be "safe" choices in the current environment. Microsoft (MSFT) and Oracle (ORCL) are on the list, as well as companies that suggest "strong cost-cutting discipline and mission-critical product sets" like BMC (BMC), CA (CA), and Symantec (SYMC). BMC and CA are big in system management and support functions while Symantec is, of course, focused on system and information security. The needs for these kinds of functionality doesn't go away.

There has been much discussion in the blogosphere about open source software and how it will see a surge of adoption do to its lower cost. Goldman quite rightly says this will not be the case. I have written that CIOs will hunker down and stick with the tried and true (which is not open source in most large-sized enterprises) and Goldman is in agreement, seeing a consolidation of functionality with big, established vendors and a moving away from the concept of seeking best-of-breed point solutions regardless of vendor.

Surprisingly, Goldman doesn't expect (CRM) to prosper particularly in the current environment. Goldman doesn't see Salesforce as one of the heavyweights who will benefit from the "consolidation" mentioned previously. On this point, I would disagree. and SAAS in general allows certain IT functions to be brought online with lower initial cost and that should remain an attractive proposition going forward no matter what the economic environment. Of course, it is always cheapest to do nothing and some enterprises will do exactly that, so will not escape this downturn altogether.

So in terms of non-defense technology companies we are batting two for two: neither hardware not software will be spared over the next several quarters as the outlook remains dim for both.

Disclosure: none

Sources: Goldman Sachs: IT-spending growth to halt


Popular posts from this blog

Running TradeRadar on Windows 7 and Windows 8

Development of the original TradeRadar Stock Inspector software was begun back in the days before Windows 7 and Windows 8 were available.

As these newer versions of Windows have become more popular, we have heard from some users that they are having problems installing and running TradeRadar on their newer PCs.

The good news is that TradeRadar will work just fine on Windows 7 and Windows 8. All you have to do is adjust the Windows Compatibility Settings to ensure TradeRadar runs as intended.

It is recommended that you can apply Compatibility Settings when running the initial installation; however, it is also possible to apply Compatibility Settings after the program has been installed.

Prior to installation
After downloading the install program, go to the folder where you have stored the TradeRadarStkInsp_7_Setup.exe or TradeRadarStkInsp_7_PRO_Setup.exe executable. Right-click on the executable file and select Properties. Click the Compatibility tab. Adjust the Compatibility mode to …

Alert HQ has moved!

End of an era!

This site was started way back in 2006/2007 to showcase my blog posts and the Alert HQ buy signals and sell signals. Alert HQ grew to include other kinds of stock alerts including Swing Signals, Trend Busters, Trend Leaders, Cash Flow Kings and more.

In the meantime, I built a sister site, and I started using some of the same Alert HQ content over there. As a result, I am discontinuing the Alert HQ data here at

The good news, however, is that all the Alert HQ signals and stock screens are still completely free. In addition, the pages have been enhanced so that you can hover over a stock symbol and a small chart will pop up so you can get a quick look at the stock's recent price action. If you click on a symbol it will take you to a page with plenty of financial and technical analysis information (still free!) as well as a larger chart that you can play with in terms of adding or deleting indicators, moving averages, etc.

Click …

Durable Goods report for Sept just so-so but Computer segment is on fire

The Durable Goods advanced report for September 2011 was released on Wednesday.

I like to dig into the Durable Goods report because it can be useful for seeing how tech in aggregate is performing and how the sector may perform in the future. I always focus on two particular measures: shipments and new orders. Let's see how it played out last month.

Shipments -- 

I generally give less importance to Shipments since this is a backward looking measure reflecting orders that have been confirmed, manufactured and shipped. It's similar to earnings reports -- it's good to know but the data is in the past and we're more interested in the future. The following chart shows how September shipments looked for the overall tech sector:

Results for the overall tech sector were a bit weak but take a look at the next chart which tracks the Computers and related products segment:

Results here were actually quite good and, to make things even better, the previous month was revised upward.