NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Shares of Atmel ( ATML) surged in late trades on Tuesday after the San Jose, Calif.-based maker of microcontrollers and other electronic component products reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings.

After the closing bell, the company posted an adjusted profit of $119.5 million, or 25 cents a share, for the three months ended Dec. 31, on revenue of $457.8 million, up 33% year-over-year and 3% on a sequential basis. The average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters was for a profit of 16 cents a share in the December period for revenue of $436.1 million.

The company said its gross margin was 49.5% in the fourth quarter, its highest level since the third quarter of 1996, and up from 46.8% in the third quarter and 37% in last year's fourth quarter. Atmel cited increased volumes, an improved mix of higher margin products, and its divestiture of its Smart Card business for the better gross margins.

The stock was last quoted at $15.38, up 4.9%, on volume of 1.4 million, according to Based on their regular session close at $14.66, the shares are up more than 200% in the past 52 weeks. Of the 13 analysts covering the stock, 10 are at either strong buy (6) or buy (4).


Perceptron ( PRCP) was on the rise in extended trading after Plymouth, Mich.-based maker of commercial and industrial measurement and inspection products reported a surprise quarterly profit.

The company said it earned $1 million, or 13 cents a share, on sales of $16.3 million in the three months ended Dec. 31. A single analyst polled by Thomson Reuters was looking for a loss of 2 cents a share on revenue of $13.5 million in the quarter.

The stock leapt 19% to $6.98 in after-hours action on volume of roughly 20,000. Year-to-date, the shares have risen more than 60%.

Perceptron attributed the strong results in its fiscal second quarter to the performance of its industrial business unit, which turned in its best sales performance since its fourth quarter of fiscal 2007. The company finished the quarter with bookings of $18.3 million, up from $14.7 million at the same time last year.

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