The Dow Jones Industrial Average is sinking today, but don’t blame it on Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) this time. The troubled computing do-it-all leads the Dow with a 4.1% gain as of 1:45 p.m. EDT. The second-best-performing Dow stock today is Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) with a measly 0.4% jump fueled by the settlement of a high-profile patent suit that will add $2.15 billion to Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE)’s coffers.
If the market gives Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) a collective shrug for that legal win, then what does it take to drive Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)’s market cap as much as $2.4 billion higher today? A few cheerful words from the CEO’s lips, backed by an unexpected product launch.
CEO Meg Whitman sat down for a long interview with CNBC this week, and the first clip was published last night. In it, Whitman concedes that there’s still “a lot of heavy lifting to do” before Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)’s long-suffering turnaround can be considered complete. But she also said that the recovery is tracking ahead of the basic five-year plan and that Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) is adapting to the demands of a new era in personal and enterprise computing.
“We’ve got to get to mobility, we’ve got to get to other operating systems,” Whitman said. That idea is right on the money.
Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) also announced a handful of new products, and one of them managed to surprise me in a good way. The so-called HP SMB IT in a Box solution (say that five times fast) is a “one-stop shop” product for the IT needs of small and midsize businesses. So far, so blah. But this package doesn’t lean on Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) Office, like most SMB solutions from HP and friends tend to do. Instead, HP includes a slew of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) tools under the Google Apps for Business banner, including Gmail, rather than the standard Outlook/Exchange combo, as well as Google Docs in place of Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Word, Excel, and PowerPoint programs.
It’s a bold move and a high-profile win for Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)’s business-class products. HP is the first big vendor to jump aboard Google’s reseller program, which helps HP stand apart in a sea of sameness. It’s not the safe and predictable choice, but rather a daring stab in a new direction.
So there’s some substance to Whitman’s big talk this time. I’m still not convinced that HP is headed in the right overall direction, and I’d like to see some thinking even further out of the box. But it’s a good start, it’s resonating with investors today.
Maybe HP did deserve to jump higher than Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE) after all.
The article Does This Dow Stock Deserve a Rocket Ride Today? originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by Anders Bylund.
Fool contributor Anders Bylund owns shares of Google, but he holds no other position in any company mentioned. Check out Anders’ bio and holdings or follow him on Twitter and Google+. The Motley Fool owns shares of Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google.
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