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HP Shares Rally On Report It Gains PC Market Share In Q1

Well, what do you know. Hewlett-Packard shares are trading sharply higher Thursday morning on reports that the PC sector had a better-than-expected first quarter – and that HP in particular is growing share faster in the U.S. than any other PC vendor, Apple included.

As I noted in a post yesterday afternoon, both Gartner and IDC reported that Q1 PC sales were a little better than expectations. Gartner said globally units were up 1.9% in the quarter, above their forecast for a 1.2% drop; IDC calculated the unit growth at 2.3%, above their projection for a 0.9% decline. There seemed to be particular strength in Europe, with some weakness in Asia-Pacific.

Among other things, the Gartner data showed HP gaining share both globally and in the U.S. in particular. On a global basis, the company now holds 17.2% of the market, up from 16.9% a year ago. On a year-over-year basis, HP grew units 3.5%, Gartner estimates. The really intriguing thing is the company’s surge in the domestic market: the company’s U.S. market share jumped to 29%, from 26.2%, as units increased 6.6%. Second-place Dell’s share of the market was steady at 22.3%; they saw a 3.6% year-over-year drop in units. Apple’s share of the market rose to 10.6% from 9.8%, but unit growth of 3.8% lagged that of HP.

HPQ this morning is up $1.07, or 4.6%, to $24.48.

The stronger-than-expected PC sales data also bodes well for the March quarter results from both Microsoft and Intel, and for the disk-drive makers Seagate and Western Digital. All are trading higher this morning.

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