Computer maker sees large rise in profits over last year

Hewlett Packard, despite some problems which saw it lose its lead in the U.S. computer business to Dell, continues to dominate the number one spot in world computer sales.  The company's fourth quarter results leaked Monday and it looks like it’s headed for more success in the short term.

In Q4 2008, HP collected $33.6B USD in revenue, up 19 percent from the same quarter a year before.  Adjusting this figure for currency effects, the increase weighed in at a still very impressive 16 percent.

While some companies struggled and shuffled leadership, HP handed shareholders a healthy $1.03 per share, excluding after-tax adjustments.  Adjustments based on restructuring, in-process research and development, and other items amounted to 19 cents per share, dropping this figure slightly to 84 cents per share.

The news of the better than expected quarter leaked ahead of HP's official announcement, which is coming on November 24.  One world economic problem plaguing HP, according to its top executives, is currency rates.  Instability in global currency will cut 5 percent from HP's revenue in Q1 2009, and 6 to 7 percent in the overall coming year, according to the company.

HP is projecting revenue of $32B to $32.5B USD for Q1 2009.  Earnings will also fall slightly from the previous quarter, an expect dip after the holiday season.

It is reported that HP expects to make $127.5B to $130B USD in 2009. 

The good news comes despite the large costs incurred by HP from its acquisition of business and technology services specialist EDS.  EDS cost $13.9B USD to acquire and forced HP to conduct some cost-saving layoffs.

CEO Mark Hurd was pleased with his company's strong performance amid the stormy market.  He stated, "HP delivered another solid quarter, as it continues to benefit from its global reach, diverse customer base, broad portfolio, and numerous cost initiatives.  Our ability to execute in a challenging marketplace differentiates HP, enabling it to increase share, expand earnings, and emerge from the current economic environment as a stronger force."

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