Sun takes US$2 billion charge in second quarter

Sun Microsystems Inc. posted second-quarter revenue on Thursday that were relatively flat compared to the same period last year, although the company took a more than US$2 billion charge.

Sun posted revenue of US$2.92 billion for its second fiscal quarter ending Dec. 29. This compares to US$3.11 billion in revenue that Sun generated in the same quarter last year, according to a statement.

Sun posted a net loss for the second quarter of US$2.28 billion or a loss of US$0.72 earnings per share. These results include a US$2.13 billion expense that Sun attributed to the impairment of goodwill and other intangible assets, in the statement, which did not specifically say what the charge is for.

Excluding charges, Sun posted US$10 million in net income for the period on slightly better than break-even earnings per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial/First Call had forecast that Sun would post a US$0.02 loss on US$2.9 billion in revenue. In the same quarter last year, Sun had a US$0.03 loss in earnings per share.

Sales of high-end Unix servers with eight or more processors have been tough to come by for some time now, which has hurt a lucrative part of Sun's business. The company has fared better with lower- end, less expensive systems.

Shares of Sun (SUNW:Nasdaq) edged down more than 4 percent to close at US$3.70 per share ahead of the earnings announcement.

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