Memory-chip maker Micron Technology's CFO wowed the crowd at the company's analyst day event in New York with news the company in September will commence a buyback of its shares ultimately reaching $10 billion. He said a dividend is not out of the question down the road.
Don't sweat the exposure of chip equipment makers Lam and KLA-Tencor to memory-chip production, says Krish Sankar of Cowen & Co. Both stocks are Buys, as demand for memory chips continues to grow. He's less enthusiastic about Applied Materials and ASML.
Western Digital said its paying down debt at lower rates and now plans to buy back at least half a billion of its stock by the end of June. Bulls are taking that as a sign that the NAND flash business may be healthier than some feared, with prices perhaps declining less than expected the rest of this year.
Micron's rising cash flow in coming years means at some point it can theoretically buy back half the company's stock, according to Evercore ISI's CJ Muse. He thinks the market won't let the company do that, instead driving up the share price from a recent $53.10 to $60 or better. Watch the upcoming analyst day on May 21st.
Shares of Qualcomm were up 2% in late trading after it said its board approved a new $10 billion buyback plan to replace the prior $15 billion plan, which is almost out of ammo. Some bulls have been hoping new buybacks will ease frustrations on the part of investors about the diminished financial outlook for the company.
Apple's buyback machine went into overdrive last quarter, with $23.5 billion in buybacks, and the last two quarters combined totaled more than all of 2017. The company this afternoon announced a brand-new $100 billion buyback plan, and a 16% increase in its quarterly dividend, the largest-ever increase since the program's start in 2012.
With 24 hours to go till Apple's earnings report, people are still chopping numbers. The set-up is as bad as 2016, writes Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi. It's not even clear a higher capital returns program will cheer investors, writes Mark Moskowitz of Barclays. But at least, a poor 2018 for iPhone sets up 2019 better, suggest the folks at BlueFin Research.
Shares of Broadcom are up 4%, pre-market, as it announced a $12 billion buyback plan. The bulls on the stock hope it will lure income and value investors to get Broadcom's stock out of its stupor after declining 10% so far this year.
Broadcom completed the change of its legal incorporation from Singapore to Delaware a week ago, and now that it's a U.S. company, investors need to understand the new "narrative" at Broadcom, writes Romit Shah of Instinet.
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg finally emerges to address the data privacy debacle, Micron shares get a big thumbs up at Instinet, NetApp cheers the Street with its growth outlook, Amazon is still buffeted by Trump talk, OLED chip maker Universal Display defended at Oppenheimer, and J.P. Morgan sees "torrid" growth in cloud computing at Google and the rest.
Zuck's "apology tour" is reassuring some sell-side analysts, Spotify shares rise a little on their third day of trading, Tencent gets approving nods from both Keybanc and Wells Fargo, Apple should be bought for its huge impending capital returns increase says a Citigroup note and II-VI is a maker of lasers for 3-D sensing and such whose shares have lagged peers and could be a good buy says Needham.
After Broadcom's hostile bid for Qualcomm was shut down by presidential order Monday evening, bulls regrouped to speculate how Broadcom may get back on the M&A bandwagon, or alternatively just give back more money to shareholders. Broadcom shares were rising in early trading.
After IBM held its annual analyst bringing, chief financial officer James Kavanaugh told Barron's that he's learned the hard way that setting explicit financial targets for many years out into the future doesn't leave a company the flexibility it needs to adapt and evolve in a rapidly changing tech landscape. He'd rather they look at the overall shape of change at the company.
Vanity Fair columnist Nick Bilton talks of Valley chatter about Apple buying Snap, even as Snap is reportedly cutting engineers, Okta's numbers shine as a cloud startup, Broadcom slams Qualcomm in an infographic, but CNBC's David Faber wonders what CFIUS has on Broadcom, Microchip gets the thumbs up at Goldman, KeyBanc's Weston Twigg raises Micron's numbers as the NAND market looks better than he expected, and Argus's Joe Bonner thinks investors will warm to Splunk, including as a potential take-out target.
The CFO of chip equipment maker Lam Research, Doug Bettinger, talks with Barron's about the company's eye-popping forecast, and how demand for chips for A.I. and all the rest is smoothing out the "amplitude" of past semiconductor cycles. That, and how his stock is undervalued.
Chip equipment maker Lam Research forecast a big jump in profit come 2021, and to bulls like Tammy Qiu of Berenberg and Amit Daryanani of RBC Capital, it suggests chip cycles are less and less cyclical, which is good.
Both Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP inc. are rising after upbeat reports Thursday, two startups, The Trade Desk and Appian delivered nice results, Nvidia and AMD have good prospects in both gaming and crypto-currency use, says Merrill Lynch, identity manager Okta gets a new fan at Deutsche Bank, Yahoo!'s Altaba offspring is too cheap relative to those Asian assets, the easy money is over with struggling fiber-optic name Applied Optoelectronics, says its most devoted short seller, while the pain continues for fiber name Acacia Communications, Western Digital has good prospects, says Stifel, and Universal Display, the maker of OLED technology, is plunging after its year outlook disappointed, though it has plenty of defenders.
Shares of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, the server, storage and networking part of the former HP, rose by almost 14% as the company beat quarterly expectations, beat with its outlook, and hiked its dividend by 50%.
Shares of PC and printer giant HP Inc. sued by almost 9% in late trading, as it delivered quarterly revenue almost a billion dollars above what Wall Street was expecting, and its CFO said the company will be looking to boost shareholder payouts down the road.
Bulls were delighted with Cisco's return to growth in its quarterly results and outlook announced Wednesday evening, as well as the promise of lot more to come in its capital returns program. Bears still worry about lack of disclosure of individual product lines, especially as it may mask continued weakness in Cisco's routing equipment sales.