Sun Microsystems Posts Loss

Sun Microsystems Inc. lost $88 million in the fourth quarter as its customers continued to cancel or delay purchases of high-power computer workstations and network servers.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company lost 3 cents per diluted share during the three months ended July 1, compared with a profit of $720 million, or 21 cents a share, over the same time last year.

Excluding one-time gains and losses, Sun earned $134 million, or 4 cents per diluted share, down from $717 million, or 21 cents a share a year ago, the company said Thursday.

The company's revenues was 3 cents a share, according to a survey by Thomson Financial/First Call. The consensus revenue estimate was $3.9 billion.

In late May, the company lowered its revenue and profit forecasts, citing both the slowing domestic economy and weakening demand in Europe.

Revenue was expected to be between $3.8 billion and $4 billion; per-share earnings were forecast to be between 2 cents and 4 cents.

For the year, Sun reported earnings of $927 million, or 27 cents per diluted share, compared with $1.9 billion, or 55 cents per diluted share, in fiscal 2000.

Annual revenue was $18.3 billion, compared with $15.7 billion last year.

Shares of Sun Microsystems closed up 45 cents, to $14.44, in trading Thursday on the Nasdaq Stock Market. After hours, shares were up 56 cents.