Oce Shares Rise after Quarterly Profit Beats Expectations

Monday, 14 Jan 2008 | 5:51 AM ET

Shares in Dutch photocopier and printer maker Oce rose as much as 24 percent on Monday, boosted by short covering after its fourth-quarter net results beat expectations.

Oce Reports Forecast-Beating Earnings
Printing firm Oce reported forecast-beating fourth-quarter earnings Monday, and announced it will raise its dividend. Jan van den Belt, CEO of Oce, talks more about the results.

The mid-cap company, which also makes scanners and offers document-management and maintenance services, reported a net profit of 35.8 million euros ($52.9 million), up from 26.7 million euros the year before and above analysts average forecast of 24.4 million.

"It's a typical short squeeze. The consensus on the company was quite negative," Petercam analyst Stefaan Genoe said, citing profit warnings from Oce's peers such as IKON Office Solutions.

"There was a big short interest in the company, and today we're seeing the reversal in some of those positions," he said.

Oce shares were up 15.2 percent.

"Although the Q4 results exceed our expectations, we still see downside in our 2008 estimates, given the weakened U.S. dollar and the weakened U.S. economy," Rabo Securities analysts said, noting that Oce generates about 45 percent of its revenue in the United States.

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