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Last Updated: Monday, 19 November 2007, 22:28 GMT
Laptop sales boost Hewlett profit
HP laptops
Hewlett Packard is the largest PC firm in the world
Hewlett Packard (HP) saw its quarterly profits rise on strong demand for laptops for the fiscal fourth quarter.

Profits hit $2.16bn (1.05bn) for the three months to 31 October, up from $1.7bn in the same period a year ago.

The results were above expectations and were helped as the company increased its software and technology services, both high-profit businesses.

Separately, HP - the world's largest maker of PCs - said it would buy back $8bn of its stock.

Analysts say this indicates the firm thinks its shares - which are up about 21% since January - are undervalued.

The company's sales increased 15% year-on-year to $28.29bn - amounting to almost $1bn more than the $27.4bn forecast.

"Great numbers, great quarter," said Brent Bracelin, an analyst at Pacific Crest Securities.

The good results come at a time of continued nervousness about the state of the US economy.

There have been worries that the fallout from the credit crunch could dampen demand for technology goods, notably from large businesses including finance firms.

But after the results were issued, chief executive Mark Hurd said: "We do not have a huge exposure to the financial services industry."

"We saw no change in spending in financial services in the quarter."

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