NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The last time I talked about Micron (MU), I argued its recent stock performance versus operational performance didn't jibe. I didn't believe Micron's management was getting the credit that it deserves.The management team had remained a mystery despite the fact that the company's stock had doubled over the past six months -- posting gains of 150% since bottoming out at $5.16 last October. They had overcome the gloom seen when Micron's flash memory business was under pressure from the likes of SanDisk ( SNDK) and Applied Materials ( AMAT). Plus, it didn't help that the personal computer market, which Micron relied upon to further its DRAM (dynamic random access memory) business, was on the decline. This is while the overall memory chip industry, which has become commoditized, began posting weak margins due to low average selling prices, or ASPs. Amid all of this turmoil, Micron managed to keep things together. With such a strong recent track record, I recommended the stock ahead of the company's third-quarter earnings report. Investors who listened to me were risking some pretty significant gains by holding. But it's proven to be a excellent bet as Micron didn't disappoint. Revenue climbed 7% year over year and 12% sequentially.
Speaking of which, I also don't believe that management has received the credit deserved for navigating the weak ASP environment the way that it has. This quarter was no different. Cost-per-bit for both DRAM and NAND were down sequentially by 5% and 1%, respectively. This contributed to better gross margin, which advanced by more than 13% year over year and by more than 6% sequentially. Even more impressive, though, is that this level of fiscal awareness by management has helped the company reverse a year-ago loss to $43 million in profits. Remarkably, even with added pressures from SanDisk and Samsung, I don't expect that this profit trend will end soon. In my recent article, these questions (among others) were my biggest sources of concern. Regarding Micron's competitive position, I said: "It will be also interesting to hear what management says about the progress of memory business and previous diversification plans. With competition gaining ground, while ASPs are falling, I've argued that Micron should seek stronger growth opportunities in other end-markets such as servers and mobile."In that regard, new developments regarding the completed acquisition for bankrupt chipmaker, Elpida, should give investors a clearer sense of how management plans to move the combined companies forward, especially since Elpida was expected to give Micron some leverage with Apple (AAPL)." Follow @saintssense This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.