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Why Palo Alto Networks, Inc. Stock Popped Today

By Steve Symington – Updated Jun 1, 2017 at 12:49PM

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The network security company jumped after a strong quarterly report. Here's what investors need to know.

What happened

Shares of Palo Alto Networks Inc. (PANW 0.42%) were up 16.5% as of 11:15 a.m. EDT on Thursday after the network and enterprise security specialist announced better-than-expected fiscal third-quarter 2017 results.

So what

Quarterly revenue rose 24.9% year over year to $431.8 million, and translated to 32.6% growth in adjusted earnings per share to $0.61. Both figures were above Palo Alto Networks' guidance provided last quarter, which called for revenue of $406 million to $416 million and adjusted earnings of $0.54 per share to $0.56 per share.

Palo Alto Networks conference booth


CEO Mark McLaughlin noted it was a record quarter in terms of revenue, while the company added the second-highest number of new customers in its history.

Now what

In addition, Palo Alto Networks expects current-quarter revenue in the range of $481 million to $491 million, or year-over year growth of 20% to 23%. That should result in adjusted net income per share of $0.78 to $0.80. Analysts, on average, were expecting revenue of $484.4 million to translate to lower adjusted earnings of $0.74 per share.

All things considered, there was nothing not to like about this strong quarter from Palo Alto Networks. And it's no surprise to see investors aggressively bidding up shares today.

Steve Symington has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Palo Alto Networks. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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