Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ) Is ‘Jumping Off’ But Into What?

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) released its earnings numbers for the three months ended June on Wednesday afternoon, and disappointed the market. Shares went into free fall today despite promises that 2013 earnings should be a jumping off point for the company’s future. Investors are clearly wondering what the company is jumping off into.

Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ) Is 'Jumping Off' But Into What?

A report on the earnings released by Stifel Research said that “HP’s prior comments that F2013 FCF generation would be a launching point for F2014-beyond” should not be a real consideration for investors. Hewlett-Packard is facing real problems, and its strategy just isn’t working yet.

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Hewlett-Packard enterprise shuffle

Before the company’s earnings report was made public yesterday afternoon, it leaked that the company was reassigning the head of its enterprise group, Dave Donatelli. That decision made sense in light of the earnings numbers. The company’s all important enterprise group saw some heavy declines.

According to the Stifel analysis, pressures in the enterprise group will be seen as an incremental concern, though not one particularly significant in the fall of shares on today’s market.

Hewlett-Packard instability

So far on Thursday, shares in Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) have lost more than 13% of their value. The company’s shareholders have still seen their investment rise in value by more than 50% since the start of the year, but yesterday’s failures and today’s losses are bound to sting.

Investors can’t be blamed for holding onto the company’s stock through earnings yesterday. The company’s last two reports resulted in spikes in the company’s share price. Coupled with today’s move however, it’s clear that the firm’s stock is very volatile in the face of results. Risk averse investors should avoid playing the PC giant through earnings if they can.

The Stifel report neglects to put a price target on Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) shares, though the analysts rate the stock as a Hold. It seems that Stifel thinks a recovery at the company, which will bring a significant rise in share value, is likely. The problem is when exactly it will be released.

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) may see 2013 as a jumping off point for the company’s future, but judging by the company’s most recent numbers, it may be headed for an abyss. HP is still a strong company, capable of a great many exceptional businesses, now they need to prove it. Perhaps 2014 will finally be the company’s year.