Doubts Raised about CES Impact

CES, otherwise known as the Consumer Electronics Show, has had a poor track record for increasing sales of exhibited electronics in the past. The show is the largest exhibit in the tech industry and often attracts big name companies and products. The event will take place in Las Vegas this week and organizers expect to attract crowds of 140,000 people.

But in the last two years CES’s big attractions have been less than successful. In 2009 the hot items were netbooks and Palm Inc.’s webOS software. Netbooks did well for a while, but were then rendered virtually obsolete by Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) line of sleek portable iPad devices. WebOS software was sold to Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) and then discontinued in 2011.

In 2010 the show’s main attraction was the exhibition of 3D TVs. Audiences weren’t thrilled at the idea of wearing 3D glasses and found very few movies that warranted 3D viewing. The technology is sticking around, but has become an accessory on high-end TV models. And in 2011 tablets abounded with hopes of becoming the next iPad, but the only one with any success was the Kindle Fire—which wasn’t even present at CES. Apple also does not attend the show, as they put on their own press conferences to release new items instead.

CES’s president, Gary Shappiro, says he’s not worried. The show, which is only open to members of the technology industry, has actually been gaining attendance in recent years. Yahoo! Finance (NASDAQ:YHOO) quoted Shapiro, who said, “I’m pretty comfortable that we’re the most important event for technology in the world. It’s difficult to come out with someone really important who’s not there.” Apple’s CEO Tim Cook would be the exception.

Here’s how these tech stocks showcasing at CES are reacting to skepticism:

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL): AAPL shares recently traded at $424.01, up $1.61, or 0.38%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $310.50 to $426.70. Volume today was 9,448,358 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 14,774,700 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 15.32, while trailing earnings are $27.68 per share.

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ): HPQ shares recently traded at $26.55, up $0.15, or 0.57%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $21.50 to $49.39. Volume today was 5,046,294 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 18,796,400 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 8.00, while trailing earnings are $3.32 per share.

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO): YHOO shares recently traded at $15.49, down $0.03, or 0.19%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $11.09 to $18.84. Volume today was 7,842,564 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 23,902,400 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 18.96, while trailing earnings are $0.82 per share.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ashley Cloninger at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com