CIENA (Nasdaq: CIEN) reported earnings on Dec. 8. Here's what you need to know.

The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Oct. 31 (Q4), CIENA beat slightly on revenues and whiffed on EPS. Margins expanded across the board.

Revenue
CIENA reported revenue of $455 million. The 19 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ wanted to see revenue of $450 million.

My

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions.

EPS
Non-GAAP EPS came in at $0.03. The 18 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ forecast $0.07 per share on the same basis. GAAP EPS were -$0.23 for Q4versus -$0.86 per share for the prior-year quarter.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Figures may be non-GAAP to maintain comparability with estimates.

Margins
For the quarter, gross margin was 41.7%, 1,350 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was -2.9%, 2,650 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was -4.9%, 1,430 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.

Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods.

Looking ahead
What does the future hold?

Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $446 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is for $0.01. (There are 19 revenue estimates and 18 EPS estimates.)

For the full year ending 2012, the average estimate for revenue is $1.9 billion. The average EPS estimate is $0.53. (There are 19 revenue estimates and 20 EPS estimates.)

Investor sentiment
The stock has a two-star rating out of five at Motley Fool CAPS, with 474 members out of 549 rating the stock outperform and 76 members rating it underperform. Among 132 CAPS All-Star picks, 106 give CIENA a green thumbs-up, and 26 give it a red thumbs-down.

Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on CIENA is outperform, with an average price target of $19.26.

Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.