Shares of networking technology outfit Cisco Systems (CSCO -1.44%) are up 4% as of 11:45 a.m. ET after reporting healthy fiscal second-quarter results, then bolstering their bullish impact by introducing a substantial stock-buyback plan.
For the three-month stretch ending in late January, Cisco Systems turned $12.7 billion worth of revenue into an operating per-share profit of $0.84. Both figures were 6% better than their year-ago comparisons, but perhaps more important, both numbers topped analysts' expectations for a top line of just under $12.7 billion and a bottom line of $0.81 per share. While the company acknowledges the difficulty of operating in an environment crimped by supply chain issues and the lingering fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic, it's mostly pushing past those headwinds.
Underscoring this continued progress is Cisco's guidance for the quarter now underway, as well as for the full year. The organization now expects to report revenue growth of between 3% and 5% for the fiscal third quarter, and earnings of between $0.70 and $0.74 per share. For the entire year, Cisco Systems anticipated top-line growth of between 5.5% and 6.5% and per-share earnings of between $2.83 and $2.92.
Better still (and arguably best of all), Cisco's board of directors has authorized $15 billion worth of stock repurchases. For perspective, the company's current market cap stands at $236 billion.
Cisco is doing fine -- maybe even better than expected -- so today's sizable advance is well deserved. And, valued at only 16.5 times this year's projected profits and 15.3 times next year's expected earnings, the market isn't pricing in unreasonable expectations for the iconic technology outfit. This valuation paired with the fact that most of January's steep sell-off has yet to be reclaimed suggests today's pop could be the start of something worth plugging into.