Why Cray, Inc. Shares Skyrocketed

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of Cray, (NASDAQ: CRAY  ) soared 39% Friday after the supercomputing specialist turned in solid fourth-quarter results and encouraging forward guidance.

So what: Quarterly sales rose nearly 63% year over year, to $307.4 million, which translated to adjusted net income of $1.48 per diluted share. By contrast, analysts were only expecting earnings of $1.39 per share on sales of $300.56 million.

Going forward, and with the caveat that "a wide range of results remains possible," Cray anticipates full-year 2014 revenue of $600 million. Once again, the majority of that number will be heavily skewed toward the back half of the year, with about $50 million expected in Q1, and roughly $300 million in Q4. Analysts, on average, were looking for 2014 sales of $596.25 million.

Cray also expects to be profitable on both a GAAP and non-GAAP basis in 2014.

Now what: Shares currently trade at a lofty 48 times this year's expected earnings -- not horrendously expensive given Cray's growth; but at the same time it doesn't make me want to jump in, especially after today's massive pop. As it stands, I think investors would do well to let the dust settle before making any decisions about buying Cray in the near term.

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  • Report this Comment On February 14, 2014, at 5:11 PM, CoffeeIsLife wrote:

    Note that Cray's biggest competitor in the HPC (high performance computing) market is IBM, which just sold off it's X86 business to a Chinese company (Levnovo). 77% of IBM's systems In the top 500 HPC list are X86 based systems. I'd bet that quite a few of IBM's customers are going to be unwilling to purchase major sized HPC systems from a Chinese company. This adds up to a significant opportunity for Cray to increase it's market share.

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