Wednesday's Tech Winners & Losers
Update from 12:46 p.m. EDT
The broader technology market was flat Wednesday, although some of the bigger movers were to the downside.
Applied Materials (AMAT) fell 4.1% after the chipmaker posted solid third-quarter earnings but warned that fourth-quarter results would be weaker than expected. The company earned $473.5 million, or 34 cents a share, on revenue of $2.56 billion. Excluding items, the company earned 35 cents a share. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial had expected earnings of 32 cents a share on revenue of $2.53 billion.
Looking ahead, however, Applied Materials sees fourth-quarter earnings of 26 cents to 29 cents a share on a sequential revenue decline of 5% to 10%, which would imply revenue of $2.31 billion to $2.43 billion. Analysts project earnings of 30 cents a share on revenue of $2.46 billion. Shares closed down 88 cents to $20.36.Elsewhere, Amtech Systems (ASYS) slumped 11.2% after the supplier of production and automation systems for the semiconductor, solar cell, silicon wafer and microelectromechanical industries posted third-quarter results and issued fourth-quarter revenue guidance that disappointed investors. The company earned $1 million, or 15 cents a share, on revenue of $12.9 million. Results included a tax benefit of about $550,000. The single-analyst forecast called for earnings of 11 cents a share on revenue of $12.7 million. Looking ahead, Amtech sees fourth-quarter revenue of $12 million to $13.5 million, below the single-analyst forecast of $14.2 million. Shares closed down $1.32 to $10.49. Meanwhile, Tower Semiconductor (TSEM) fell 13.9% after the company posted mixed second-quarter results and warned that third-quarter revenue would be lower than expected. The company reported a loss of $34.4 million, or 28 cents a share, on revenue of $57.1 million. A single analyst had expected a bigger loss of 31 cents a share on higher revenue of $58.9 million. Looking ahead, Tower sees third-quarter revenue of $56 million to $60 million, below the single-analyst forecast of $66 million. Shares were down 23 cents to $1.43. Agilent Technologies (A) tumbled 10.9% after the maker of test and measurement equipment posted disappointing third-quarter results and warned that fourth-quarter results would be lower than expected. The company posted adjusted third-quarter earnings of $194 million, or 48 cents a share, on revenue of $1.37 billion. Analysts expected earnings of 49 cents a share on revenue of $1.39 billion. Looking ahead, Agilent now sees fourth-quarter earnings of 50 cents to 54 cents a share on revenue of $1.39 billion to $1.43 billion. Analysts project earnings of 58 cents a share on revenue of $1.47 billion. Shares were down $3.94 to $32.39. Finally, shares of Verisign (VRSN) rose 3% after the network security provider said it priced $1.1 billion of 3.25% junior subordinated convertible debentures due in 2037. The company said it could sell the debentures to qualified institutional buyers and expects to close the deal on Aug. 20. Shares advanced 87 cents to $29.51. As for the broader technology sector, the Nasdaq 100 was down more than 36 points to about 1865.
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