Dell's Revenue Outlook Disappoints Wall Street

Dell Inc. (DELL), Thursday posted sales just shy of Wall Street expectations and its shares fell 3 percent, even though profit excluding a charge topped analysts' forecasts.

The world's largest personal computer maker reported net income, excluding a tax-related charge, of $947 million, or 37 cents a share, in the fiscal fourth quarter ended Jan. 28, compared with $749 million, or 29 cents a share, a year earlier.

"It looks pretty much in line on revenues and a small beat on earnings," said Chris Baggini, manager of the Gartmore Growth Fund (search). "I think some people are disappointed the revenue guidance for the next quarter is slightly below the street."

Including the charge, net income fell 11 percent to $667 million. Revenue rose 17 percent to $13.46 billion from $11.51 billion.

Wall Street on average was looking for earnings, excluding the charge, of 36 cents a share, according to Reuters Estimates. Forecasts were clustered in a tight range, from 36 cents to 38 cents.

Analysts had been looking for revenue of $13.55 billion, or year-over-year growth of 17.7 percent, according to Reuters Estimates.

For Dell's fiscal first quarter ending in April, the company said it is expecting a profit of 37 cents a share on $13.4 billion in revenue, with product shipments climbing 21 percent.

Analysts had been expecting a first-quarter profit of 36 cents a share on revenue of $13.5 billion.

Shares of Dell, based in Round Rock, Texas, fell 3.2 percent to $40.20 in after-hours trade on the Inet electronic brokerage from their Nasdaq (search) close of $41.57.