Software firms, already struggling with falling sales, may miss out on crucial end of quarter US sales, due to disrupted services following the US terrorist attacks last week.
Analysts have warned that companies may miss out on sales owing to delayed and disrupted air travel and businesses putting new orders on hold while they assess how they have been affected by the attacks and their aftermath.
Oracle has already said it expects new sales to be hit for as long as six months, and analysts believe that big names such as Microsoft, Peoplesoft and Siebel will suffer also.
As Pacific Crest Securities analyst Brendan Barnicle said: "To do large software deals you need to have face-to-face meetings. Over the next two weeks it's going to be very difficult for folks to have face-to-face meetings."
Experts have said that firms may close half the entire quarter's deals in the last month of the period, and as much as 40 per cent of sales in the last two weeks. With the third quarter ending at the end of the month for many businesses, figures are expected to be down across the board.
In a research note, broker SG Cowen said: "With many businesses shutting down last week and likely to be reassessing their plans over the next two weeks, we would not be surprised to see many of the leading enterprise software companies miss third-quarter results."
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