Early Stocks in Motion

Semtech's third-quarter EPS beat Wall Street's forecast by a penny.
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Semtech

(SMTC) - Get Report

shares rose 3% in after-hours trading Tuesday after the chipmaker's earnings beat analysts' mean estimate by a penny.

Semtech posted third-quarter net income of $11.5 million, or 15 cents a share, compared with net income of $14.6 million, or 19 cents a share, a year ago. Sales in the quarter ended Oct. 30 declined 6% to $60.9 million from $65 million. According to Thomson First Call, analysts expected earnings of 14 cents a share and sales of $60 million. For the fourth quarter, Semtech sees earnings of 16 cents a share and 4% to 6% sequential revenue growth. Analysts, on average, predict fourth-quarter earnings of 16 cents a share and revenue of $63 million. Semtech shares gained 50 cents to $17.20 after hours.

Chico's FAS

(CHS) - Get Report

said it earned $53.2 million, or 29 cents a share, for the third quarter ended Oct. 29, up from $37.1 million, or 21 cents a share, a year ago. Revenue at the women's apparel retailer rose 33% to $358.7 million from $269.8 million last year. Analysts expected a profit of 28 cents a share and revenue of $358.4 million, according to First Call. The company's same-store sales rose 16% for the third quarter, and 11.8% in November. The stock fell 88 cents, or 2%, to $44 in after-hours trading.

Gottschalks

(GOT)

reported that its third-quarter loss widened slightly to $1.6 million from $1.5 million. On a per-share basis, the loss was flat at 12 cents. The latest quarter's loss from continuing operations was $1.5 million, or 11 cents a share. The department store chain said revenue for the quarter ended Oct. 29 rose 2.3% to $151.3 million from $147.9 million last year. Same-store sales, however, fell 0.5%. The results missed analysts' estimates for a loss of 8 cents a share and revenue of $152.7 million. "We experienced increased distribution costs related to higher fuel prices as well as expenses associated with a new store opening and the closing of another store," said Jim Famalette, president and chief executive, in a statement. The stock was unchanged at $8.52 after hours.

FirstEnergy

(FE) - Get Report

raised its 2006 earnings guidance to $3.45 to $3.65 a share, before items, from its July projection of $3.40 to $3.60 a share. The energy company also said its subsidiaries will make a voluntary pension contribution between $500 million and $600 million before the end of 2005. "Based on refinements we've made to our operational, financial and regulatory plans since this summer, we believe it is appropriate to raise our 2006 earnings and cash generation guidance from the amounts disclosed in July," said Anthony J. Alexander, president and CEO, in a statement. The stock was up 55 cents, or 1.2%, to $47.60 in after-hours trading.

SurModics

(SRDX) - Get Report

announced that it has licensed its hydrophilic technology to

Medtronic

(MDT) - Get Report

for use in the medical-device maker's drug-coated stents. The hydrophilic technology will be used to provide the lubricious coating on the stent's delivery system, the companies said. SurModics shares rose 93 cents, or 2.4%, to $40.13 in after-hours trading.

Microchip Technology

(MCHP) - Get Report

shares gained 4% in the post-close session after the chipmaker reiterated its fiscal third-quarter guidance and boosted its long-term gross margin forecasts. For the third quarter ending Dec. 31, Microchip sees earnings of 32 cents a share and sales of $234 million, which match analysts' mean estimates. The company also said it expects its gross margin in two to three years to be about 62%, up from an earlier forecast of 60%. Microchip attributed the improved margin outlook to its product mix, a conversion to flash and mixed-signal microcontrollers, a fab ramp-up and pricing opportunities. Microchip shares gained $1.21 to $33.35.

Ashworth

(ASHW)

announced that it is exploring strategic alternatives and warned that it will post a loss for its recently ended fourth quarter. The maker of golf-inspired sportswear said it has hired Houlihan Lokey Howard & Zukin to advise the company on possible strategies. "The company believes it is well positioned to increase shareholder value despite general softness in the golf industry," Ashworth said.

For the quarter ended Oct. 31, the company expects to report a loss of $2.1 million to $2.4 million, or 15 cents to 17 cents a share. Analysts had predicted break-even results. Ashworth sees fourth-quarter revenue of $55 million, above analysts' projection of $50 million. The company said its margins were hurt by promotions and lower-than-anticipated sales of full-margin products. For fiscal 2006, Ashworth expects revenue of $210 million to $220 million, above analysts' projection of $209 million. Ashworth shares rose 23 cents, or 2.6%, to $8.95 after hours.

Tessera Technologies

(TSRA)

said its chief financial officer, R. Douglas Norby, has informed the company that he plans to retire. Norby will remain in his current role until a successor could be found. Tessera shares fell 7 cents to $27.54 in after-hours trading.

Radware

(RDWR) - Get Report

, a maker of software for network management, agreed to buy V-Secure Technologies for $15 million in cash. The company also agreed to issue warrants for 45,500 Radware shares at an exercise price of $22 a share. V-Secure provides behavior-based network-intrusion prevention systems. Radware shares were unchanged after hours at $18.84.