Technology exchange traded funds felt a headwind Tuesday from Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ), which saw its shares fall 5% before the open as the company lowered its full-year outlook partly due to the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.
Late Monday there were reports of a leaked memo to top Hewlett-Packard executives from CEO Leo Apotheker warning of “another tough quarter” and telling them to focus more on hiring and expenses.
The company Tuesday morning reported higher quarterly profit, but cut its full-year earnings forecast, in part citing “continued softness in sales of consumer PCs.”
Sterne Agee analysts in a note called the downbeat memo a setback and disappointing, although they added the comment on costs is “not entirely surprising as most U.S. corporations have been cautious with hiring and expenses and that goes a long way into explaining why U.S. unemployment remains high.”
The analysts trimmed some of their Hewlett-Packard estimates but kept their buy rating on the stock.