: Intel's fourth-quarter profit increased 48% to $3.4 billion, or 59 cents a share. Profit increased 15% sequentially, indicating solid momentum for 2011. Revenue stretched 8% year-over-year to $12 billion and 3% sequentially. The gross margin widened to 68%, exceeding internal expectations and hitting a record high. Intel held $23 billion of cash, short-term investments, equity securities and trading assets at the quarter's end, compared to $2.1 billion of debt, converting to a low debt-to-equity ratio and a 3.5 current ratio.
: Intel's adjusted profit of 59 cents beat analysts' consensus estimate by 11%. Yet, Intel has an average historical earnings beat of 22%. Its sales outgrew the consensus by 0.8%, compared to an average sales beat rate of 1.4%. The stock was up nearly 3% in afterhours trading. Data Center sales increased 15%, sequentially. PC Client, Intel Architecture and Atom revenue remained flat. The CFO noted that the record performance is evident in Intel's 10-year high operating profit margin of 38%.
Intel is forecasting nearly $12 billion of first-quarter revenue, matching the record just achieved, and a gross margin around 66%, a marginal decline. It expects softness in the consumer segment, but ongoing strength in enterprise spending.
: Intel pays a quarterly dividend of 18 cents, converting to a yield of 3.5%. The dividend has grown 12% a year, on average, over a three-year span and 15% a year, on average, over a five-year span. Analysts don't forecast a near-term boost.
: Currently, 31 analysts, or 60%, advise purchasing Intel's stock, 18 recommend holding and three say to sell. Intel is the sixth worst-rated Dow stock. The stock has a median 12-month price target of $23.92. Here is a look at sell-side targets:
, Outperform, $28 Target
, Buy, $26 Target
, Buy, $25 Target
, Buy, $25 Target
, Equal Weight, $23 Target
, Neutral, $20 Target
, Neutral, $17 Target
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