|From Briefing.com: 4:30 pm : 4:16PM Novellus beats by $0.26, beats on revs (NVLS) 49.34 : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.73 per share, $0.26 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.47; revenues fell 26.5% year/year to $282.7 mln vs the $277.24 mln consensus. Bookings in the fourth quarter of 2011 were $286.9 million, up $60.0 million or 26.4 percent from third quarter 2011 bookings of $226.9 million. Fourth quarter shipments of $276.5 million were down $25.1 million or 8.3 percent from $301.6 million in the third quarter of 2011.|
4:28PM Cymer beats by $0.20, beats on revs; guides Q1 revs below consensus (CYMI) 50.92 +0.01 : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.40 per share, $0.20 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.20; revenues rose 4.1% year/year to $152.9 mln vs the $127.89 mln consensus. Co issues downside guidance for Q1, sees Q1 revs of appros $138 mln vs. $148.09 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate. The co also expects Installed Base Products revenue to remain at or above the prior quarter level led by installed base growth, increased ArF pulses and light source product enhancements. They anticipate shipping a similar number of DUV ArF Immersion light sources, as compared to last quarter, but a lower number of KrF. The co anticipates recognizing revenue on fourth 3100 EUV source and third TCZ system. The firm will continue to invest in EUV development resources, manufacturing capacity, and field support. They view 2012 as a pivotal year for advancing power and performance for 3100 fielded sources and 3300 source demand." For Q1 the co also expects gross margin to be approx 48 to 49%, R&D expenses to be approximately $39 to $41 mln, SG&A expenses to be approximately $16.5 million and the effective tax rate to be approximately 32%.
4:17PM Microchip beats by $0.01, reports revs in-line; guides Q4 EPS in-line, revs in-line (MCHP) 37.69 +0.13 : Reports Q3 (Dec) earnings of $0.42 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.01 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.41; revenues fell 10.5% year/year to $329.2 mln vs the $328.72 mln consensus. Co issues in-line guidance for Q4, sees EPS of $0.43-0.47, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.44 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q4 revs of $332.4-345.6 mln vs. $337.85 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.
4:07PM Power Integrations beats by $0.02, beats on revs; guides Q1 revs in-line (POWI) 37.06 +0.28 : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.29 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.02 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.27; revenues fell 8.6% year/year to $66.7 mln vs the $66.03 mln consensus. Co issues in-line guidance for Q1, sees Q1 revs of $64-70 mln vs. $67.48 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate. Gross margins are expected to be flat to 50 basis points higher compared with the fourth quarter;
4:05PM Ixia beats by $0.01, beats on revs (XXIA) : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.18 per share, $0.01 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.17; revenues rose 7.6% year/year to $83.7 mln vs the $82.55 mln consensus. "Accelerated demand for our 10G and high-speed Ethernet solutions drove growth in the quarter along with higher than expected sales of LTE and Wi-Fi testing solutions. We saw especially strong demand from equipment manufacturers and from customers in North America..."
Stocks had a choppy, range bound session that concluded with mixed results for the major averages. The action precedes the highly anticipated payrolls report.
The major averages mustered varied gains in the early going, but they failed to sustain the move. That resulted in a downward drift, but only the Nasdaq was able to stay out of the red. The Nasdaq was also the only major average to settle with a solid gain. The Nasdaq's relative strength was partly owed to strong performances by the likes of Amazon.com (AMZN 181.72, +2.26), which rebounded from its prior session slide, and Qualcomm (QCOM 60.73, +1.17), which complemented a better-than-expected earnings report with strong guidance.
Although not a Nasdaq constituent, tech-related global payments company MasterCard (MA 381.57, +23.95) was a top performer today. The stock rallied on the back of an upside earnings surprise. Collectively, tech stocks scored a gain of just 0.3% today.
Social network outfit Facebook was in focus following the company's filing for an initial public offering. Most reports suggest the company could be valued up to $100 billion, which would more than quadruple the $23 billion valuation that Google (GOOG 585.11, +4.28) garnered in its IPO.
A handful of retailers had strong results, even though only half of the 20 retailers covered today by Briefing.com analysts posted same-store sales that exceeded expectations. Gap (GPS 21.52, +2.07), Target (TGT 52.00, +0.58), and Costco (COST 85.51, +2.29) were among those with more impressive results, while Macy's (M 35.23, +1.24) and Nordstrom (JWN 49.11, -0.41) were among those that disappointed.
Financials had been a source of leadership in late morning trade, but the sector's gains were petered out and it was left to drift sideways into the close. Still, it settled with a 0.5% gain, which means that it outperformed the broad market for the third straight session.
Health care stocks lagged all session and settled with a 0.4% gain. The sector's weakness was partly owed to disappointment over the latest quarterly reports from Boston Scientific (BSX 5.84, -0.25) and CIGNA (CI 44.13, -1.55). Even Cardinal Health (CAH 42.22, -0.86) traded lower in sympathy, despite its upside earnings surprise.
Fed Chairman Bernanke was in focus during his testimony to the House of Representatives Budget Committee. He indicated that the sluggish expansion of the economy has left it vulnerable to shocks, but noted that concerns about the domestic outlook and developments in Europe are abating.
Bernanke's comments came a day before the release of the official monthly payrolls report, which will be posted tomorrow morning. The pivotal nature of the report made for a more subdued session of trade as many market participants displayed caution. The consensus among economists polled by Briefing.com pegs the increase to nonfarm payrolls at 155,000. Yesterday the ADP Employment Change, which is often directionally accurate relative to expectations, came short of the consensus estimate.
With the monthly payrolls report on the horizon, a modest amount of attention was paid to the latest initial jobless claims tally, which declined by 12,000 to 367,000. That's actually less than the 375,000 initial claims that had been expected, on average, among economists polled by Briefing.com.
Fourth quarter productivity and cost data also made few waves. Productivity increased 0.7%, as had been expected, but labor costs climbed 1.2%, which is greater than the 0.7% increase that had been broadly expected.
Advancing Sectors: Energy +0.5%, Financials +0.5%, Consumer Staples +0.3%, Tech +0.3%, Telecom +0.1%
Declining Sectors: Industrials -0.1%, Consumer Discretionary -0.1%, Utilities -0.3%, Health Care -0.4%, Materials -0.5% DJ30 -11.05 NASDAQ +11.41 NQ100 +0.3% R2K +0.4% SP400 +0.1% SP500 +1.45 NASDAQ Adv/Vol/Dec 1525/1.90 bln/990 NYSE Adv/Vol/Dec 1695/810 mln/1289
8:04AM KEMET signs agreement to acquire Niotan for $30 mln (KEM) 9.41 : Co announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Niotan, a manufacturer of tantalum powders, from an affiliate of Denham Capital Management. Niotan has been a significant supplier of tantalum powder to KEMET for several years. KEMET will pay an initial purchase price of $30 mln at the closing of the transaction and additional deferred payments of $45 mln over a thirty month period after the closing. KEMET will also be required to make quarterly royalty payments for tantalum powder produced by Niotan after the closing of the transaction, in an aggregate amount equal to $10 mln by Dec 31, 2014. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including expiration or termination of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act, and is expected to close in Mar 2012.
7:17AM Benchmark Elec beats by $0.07, beats on revs; guides Q1 EPS in-line, revs above consensus (BHE) 17.89 : Reports Q4 (Dec) earnings of $0.17 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.07 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.10; revenues fell 10.8% year/year to $559 mln vs the $516.76 mln consensus. Co issues mixed guidance for Q1, sees EPS of $0.17-0.23, excluding non-recurring items, vs. $0.18 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q1 revs of $550-590 mln vs. $541.51 mln Capital IQ Consensus Estimate.bhe
1:37AM Qualcomm recommends rejection of below-market mini-tender offer by TRC Capital (QCOM) 59.56 : Co announces it has been notified of an unsolicited "mini-tender" offer by TRC Capital Corporation to purchase up to 2 mln shares, or ~0.12%, of co's outstanding common stock at a price of $55.00 per share in cash. TRC's offer price is ~4.5% below the $57.59 closing price of Qualcomm common stock on January 18, 2012, the day before the offer commenced. The offer is subject to various conditions, including TRC's ability to obtain sufficient financing necessary to fund its financial obligations arising from the offer. Qualcomm does not endorse TRC's mini-tender offer and recommends that Qualcomm stockholders do not tender their shares since the offer is below the current market price for Qualcomm shares.
Last night, Qualcomm (QCOM $61.21 +1.58) reported first quarter earnings of $0.97 per share, excluding $0.01 loss per share attributable to the QSI segment, $0.11 loss per share attributable to certain share-based compensation and $0.03 loss per share attributable to certain acquisition-related items, $0.07 better than the Capital IQ Consensus Estimate of $0.90, while revenues rose 39.8% year/year to $4.68 billion versus the $4.58 billion consensus. The company issued upside guidance for the second quarter with EPS of $0.91-0.97 versus the $0.89 Capital IQ Consensus Estimate; sees Q2 revs of $4.6-5 billion versus the $4.5 billion consensus. The company raised guidance for fiscal year 2012 with EPS of $3.55-3.75 up from $3.42-3.62 versus the $3.60 Capital IQ Consensus with revenues of $18.7-19.7 billion up from $18-19 billion versus the $18.45 billion consensus. The company reported MSM shipments of 156 million units, up 32 percent yeaer over year and 23 percent sequentially.
Last night, JDS Uniphase (JDSU $12.69 -0.76) reported second quarter earnings of $0.15 per share, excluding non-recurring items, $0.05 better than the Capital IQ Consensus of $0.10, while revenues fell 13.4% year/year to $413.1 million versus the $391.01 million consensus. The comapny issued in-line guidance for the third quarter with revenues of $410-425 million versus the $417.43 million consensus.
09:25 am Intersil downgraded to Hold at Needham: . Needham downgrades ISIL to Hold from Buy following earnings. The firm says near-term the turns requirement for Q1 is flat at 35% and given management's clear inclination to keep inventory very low, ISIL's revenue is poised to bounce sharply when demand returns. They expect the shares to have a muted to favorable response to this otherwise lackluster print and guide and would suggest investors take advantage of this share strength to downsize positions. Firm says given their lowered estimates they can no longer justify a Buy rating in ISIL shares and have consequently downgraded their rating.
10:30 am S&P Tech Sector Trading Modestly Higher, Slightly Outpacing S&P 500
The tech sector is trading higher today, ahead of gains in the broader market. Semiconductors are showing strength in line with the tech space with the Philly Semi Index trading 0.7% higher. MKSI (+6.6%) is a notable standout in the chip index. Among other major indices, the SPY and the QQQ are trading 0.3% higher on the session. Among tech bellwethers, QCOM (+2.8%) is showing strength, while AAPL (-0.1%) and IBM (-0.1%) are under a little pressure.
In earnings last night, QCOM (+2.8%) posted a quarterly beat and offered upside guidance. Elsewhere, JDSU (-5.4%) also posted a beat, but reported guidance inline with consensus, CNQR (+10.0%) posted a beat with mixed guidance, EA (+8.4%) posted a beat with downside guidance, and OTEX (+14.7%) reported a beat. This morning, ADS (+1.3%) posted a bottom line beat with inline revs and below consensus Q1 guidance.
In news last night, Facebook (FB) filed to go public, confirming much of the speculation ahead of the highly anticipated S-1 filing.
Among notable analyst upgrades this morning, DELL (+2.2%) was upgraded to Overweight at JPMorgan, RDWR (+1.8%) was upgraded to Outperform at RBC Capital, Stifel Nicolaus upgraded OTEX (+14.7%) to Buy, and CNQR (+10.0%) was upgraded to Buy at UBS.
Among downgrades, JDSU (-5.4%) was downgraded to Neutral at UBS, CTL (-2.1%) was downgraded to Neutral at Goldman and Needham downgraded ISIL (-5.7%) to Hold.
APKT (+2.3%), CAVM (+2.3%), and NVLS (+0.3%) are a few notable names in tech scheduled to report results today after the close.