TAIPEI, TAIWAN ( TheStreet) -- United Microelectronics ( UMC), one of the world's largest chip makers, reported a drop in profit compared to last year.

Still, the company tried to highlight its better sequential performance, led by stronger wafer shipments during the second quarter.

In a press release, UMC said its revenue dropped year-over-year to NT$22.6 billion from NT$25.2 billion. Despite that, revenues increased by more than 100% sequentially thanks to a jump in demand. Eight-inch wafer shipments grew to 898,000 in the second quarter from 875,000 in the year-ago period, but exploded even further by 134% compared to the first quarter.

Earnings fell to NT$1.55 billion, or NT$0.12 per share, from NT$2.39 billion, or NT$0.19 per share. Still, it's UMC's first quarterly profit post in a year.

Giving a glowing quarter-over-quarter peak into the future, UMC said it expected to increase wafer shipments by another 8% to 10% in the third quarter, with profit increasing modestly. The company also said it expected its computer segment to drive the most in the third quarter, with its consumer and communications segments following just behind. UMC is also expecting to raise its 2009 capital expenditure budget to US$500 million.

Earlier in the month, both Texas Instruments ( TXN) and Intel ( INTC) reported robust forecasts in their earnings reports as well.

--Reported by Sung Moss in New York.
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