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IBM Tops First-Quarter Earnings Estimates As Restructuring Continues

IBM (IBM) reported first-quarter results late Monday that beat analyst estimates on the top and bottom line. IBM stock climbed.




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The company reported adjusted earnings of $1.77 a share on revenue of $17.7 billion. Analysts expected IBM to report earnings of $1.63 a share on revenue of $17.3 billion.

IBM stock climbed 2.7%, near 136.90, during after-hours action on the stock market today.

Revenue inched up 1% from the year-ago period, reversing four straight quarters of declines.

IBM has been working on a multiyear transformation that has focused on developing and expanding what IBM calls an open hybrid cloud platform. In the past eight years, IBM has invested more than $120 billion in remaking the company.

Increasing Hybrid Cloud Adoption

“Strong performance this quarter in cloud, driven by increasing client adoption of our hybrid cloud platform, and growth in software and consulting enabled us to get off to a solid start for the year,” IBM Chief Executive Arvind Krishna said in written remarks with the earnings release. “While we have more work to do, we are confident we can achieve full-year revenue growth and meet our adjusted free cash flow target in 2021.”IBM’s Cloud and Cognitive Software division, which includes Red Hat, reached $5.44 billion, up 4% and above the FactSet consensus of $5.3 billion.

Total cloud revenue jumped 19% to $26.3 billion over last 12 months. Sales of mainframe computers and other hardware rose 4% to $1.43 billion, above estimates of $1.29 billion.

In October, IBM announced plans to spin off a $19 billion technology consulting business so it can focus more intently on cloud computing and artificial intelligence. IBM stock jumped 6% on that announcement, hitting a six-month high.

Please follow Brian Deagon on Twitter at @IBD_BDeagon for more on tech stocks, analysis and financial markets.

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