SAN FRANCISCO -- LSI ( LSI) swung to a profit in the third quarter, as healthy demand for its hard-drive and networking chips and restrained spending boosted the company's bottom line. Like just about every chipmaker in recent weeks, LSI said sales in the current quarter will decline sequentially. The company said sales in the fourth quarter will range between $670 million and $710 million, a decline of 0.5% to 6% from the third quarter. That's below the average analyst expectation of $736 million, although the forecasted decline is relatively moderate compared with the grim guidance delivered by other chip firms. Intersil ( ISIL), which makes power-management chips used in notebook PCs and cell phones, said Wednesday that it expects fourth-quarter sales to decline 20% to 25%. The forecast sent the company's shares down nearly 6% in extended trading. Shares of LSI were up 2 cents at $3.85, in after-hours trading on Wednesday. In a post-earnings conference call, LSI executives told a tale that has become familiar to tech investors of late: Orders began weakening in September -- the final month of the third quarter -- and have remained soft in the first weeks of the fourth quarter. "The less-than-anticipated seasonal growth we're seeing seems to be directly tied to macroeconomic factors affecting our markets and our customers," said CEO Abhi Talwalkar. He said LSI is well-positioned to weather the downturn thanks to its solid balance sheet and a slew of recent deals with key customers.