A 30% dip in the stock price of SPS Transaction Services Inc. headed the market changes among suppliers of bank technology services last week.
SPS, based in Riverwoods, Ill., provides credit card transaction processing services and operates a private-label credit card business.
Its stock price dropped on an announcement that second-quarter earnings will fall short of analyst expectations. Analysts had predicted earnings of 40 cents per share. SPS' actual second-quarter earnings should come in between 22 and 25 cents per share, company executives said.
Like many credit card businesses, SPS has been hard hit by consumer credit delinquencies. SPS officials attributed its earnings dip to chargeoffs in its private-label card business.
"We have tightened our credit policies and have initiated a program of increasing prices with certain private-label credit card clients," said Robert Wieseneck, president and chief executive at SPS.
However, he said earnings will continue to be adversely impacted by credit delinquencies over at least the next year.
Several other bank technology stocks suffered this week amid investor concerns over weak personal computer sales.
Though bank technology stocks are not usually tied directly to developments in the general technology sector, sometimes bad technology news "tends to have somewhat of a ripple effect," said F. Mark D'Annolfo, analyst at Adams, Harkness & Hill Inc., Boston.
The Nasdaq composite index had closed down for six consecutive trading days, and despite a rebound Friday, it finished down 38.24 points for the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 32.51 points for the week.
"The technology market is probably twice as jittery as the market overall because there has been such as run-up" in technology stocks, he said.
In news from other bank technology providers, Electronic Data Systems Corp., Plano, Tex., said its recent spinoff from General Motors Corp. will cost about $100 million more than the $750 million originally expected.
Excluding the $850 million charge, EDS expects its earnings to meet Wall Street's quarter-ending estimates of 51 cents per share.
As part of its spinoff, EDS expects to reduce its work force of 95,000 by about 5,000. More than half of these positions will be eliminated through attrition, EDS officials said.
Shares of EDS stock closed at $53.625 Friday afternoon, down $2.125 from closing a week earlier.
Banctec Inc., Dallas, said it sold a unit devoted to computer printer maintenance to California-based Interscience Computer Corp. for $2.05 million.
Banctec, a vendor of financial transaction processing systems, deemed the unit superfluous. Shares of Banctec stock closed at $21 Friday, which matched last week's close.
Shares of Cybercash Inc., which provides electronic commerce systems to banks, dropped $12 for the week. Analysts said there was no obvious cause for the dip.