Shares of Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), the No. 1 provider of Internet gear, soared more than 8 percent Thursday after reporting fourth-quarter net income that beat analyst estimates by a penny and as boosting its dividend 75 percent to 14 cents a share.
By midday, Cisco shares were at $18.79, up $1.43, after touching $18.92 earlier, vaulting its market capitalization past $100 billion for the first time in months.
The San Jose, Calif., company reported fourth-quarter net income of $1.92 billion, or 36 cents a share, compared with the year-earlier's $1.23 billion, or 22 cents, as revenue rose 4 percent to $11.7 billion. Earnings from operations were 47 cents a share compared with estimates of only 45 cents a share.
"There is no question that our industry and technology architectures, built on integrated products, services and software platforms to fuel our customers' businesses is proving the right strategy for our success," said CEO John Chambers. The company reported cash and investments exceeding $48.7 billion as of July 28.
Analysts like Kevin Drummon of Citigroup (NYSE: C) repeated their "buy" ratings but boosted the price targets on Cisco to $21 from $19, especially due to its cash position and higher dividend.