Resilient demand for PCs and servers helped Intel Corp’s margin and revenue forecasts blast past Wall Street expectations, allaying fears of a technology spending slowdown and sending its shares up nearly 8 percent. \nThe company posted net income of US$2.9 billion, or US$0.51 a share, versus a net loss of US$398 million, or US$0.7 a share, in the second quarter of last year. Analysts had expected earnings of 43 cents per share in the second quarter. \nRevenue in the quarter ended June 26 was US$10.8 billion, above the US$10.25 billion expected, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. And its gross profit margin in the second quarter was 67 percent, exceeding the 64 percent expected by analysts. \nIntel’s stellar results set an upbeat tone for the industry’s earnings season and the world’s top chipmaker expects a record gross margin of 67 percent for the third quarter, give or take a couple percentage points. \nIt foresees revenue of US$11.2 billion to US$12 billion, surpassing analysts’ target of US$10.9 billion. \n“Demand was stronger than many people anticipated. The Street was concerned corporate spending would be restrained with what’s happened in Europe, and that wasn’t the case,” said John Massey, portfolio manager at Sun America Asset Management. \n“The real thing that got the Street going was the gross margin guidance, which they raised. It shows a lot of confidence that the company has for the back half of the year. If the company was at all concerned about demand, you wouldn’t have expected them to raise that number,” he said. \nIntel executives said there are clear signs of renewed spending by corporations. \n“Now that corporations have some breathing room in the economy and their budgets, you’re starting to see those machines that were four or five years-old get refreshed,” Intel CEO Paul Otellini said in a conference call with analysts. \nOtellini added channel inventory remained “lean,” and the company is comfortable with rising internal inventories. \nGleacher&Co analyst Doug Freedman said new products in Intel’s data center group, which makes chips for servers used by corporations, provided a big lift to Intel’s top line. \n“I’d expect that the enterprise market continues to be strong into the third quarter,” CFO Stacy Smith said. \nIntel has high hopes for the launch of its Sandy Bridge processor later this year. Smith said Intel expects to move up more of its capital expenditures into this year from next year, to prepare for that ramp-up. \nShares in Intel rose 7.1 percent to US$22.50 in extended trade. Microsoft Corp and Cisco Systems Inc rose about 2 percent after-hours. Intel’s arch-foe, Advanced Micro Devices Inc, climbed 5 percent. And Texas Instruments Inc climbed 1.8 percent. \nIn Asia, investors chased shares of major technology companies following Intel’s upbeat forecasts. Taiwan’s Acer Inc (宏碁), the world’s No. 2 PC vendor, shot up 6 percent while its Chinese rival Lenovo Group Ltd (聯想) gained 4.8 percent. Both stocks hit three-week highs. \n“We have more confidence in the tech sector’s recovery now,” said Tom Tang, analyst at Masterlink Investment Advisory (元富證券) in Taipei. “It looks like inventory is healthy and won’t be a problem in the third quarter.” \nApart from Acer and Lenovo, top contract chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (台積電) also rose 1.7 percent and South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co, the world’s largest maker of memory chips and displays, jumped 3.4 percent. \nSeparately, ASML Holding NV, a key supplier to computer chip makers, said yesterday it bounced back to profit in the second quarter from a loss in the same period last year thanks to a sharp rebound in demand. \nThe company, which supplies tools to Intel and Samsung, said it made a net profit of 239 million euros (US$300 million), compared to a loss of 104 million euros in the same period last year. Revenues rose to 1.07 billion euros from 277 million euros in last year’s second quarter. \nASML said in a statement it expects full-year sales this year to be 10 to 15 percent higher than its 2007 record of 3.8 billion euros as chip makers make up for under investment amid the economic crisis. \n“This level of sales is expected to continue into 2011, barring a major macro-economic downturn, as it is supported by a number of fundamental growth drivers,” ASML CEO Eric Meurice said in a statement.
HELPING HAND: Taiwan is ready to help other nations and will not sit idly by while the global fight against the coronavirus continues, President Tsai Ing-wen said Taiwan, as a responsible member of the international community, is to offer humanitarian assistance to nations hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic by sending them masks and medicine, as well as sharing with them an electronic system that the government has been using to track down people that need to be quarantined, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said yesterday. With the nation’s daily production having reached 13 million masks and soon to reach 15 million, the government is to donate 10 million masks to medical personnel in nations most severely affected by the coronavirus, Tsai said at the Presidential Office in Taipei. The
NINE NEW CASES: The CECC said two locally transmitted cases of COVID-19, and seven imported ones – five women and two men – brought the nation’s total to 348 People who refuse to wear a mask on public transportation after being asked to do so would face a NT$3,000 to NT$15,000 fine, effective immediately, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said yesterday after announcing nine additional COVID-19 cases. In a move to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications on Tuesday announced that people must wear masks on trains and intercity buses, while Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, on Tuesday said that people should wear them when they cannot maintain a social distance of 1.5m indoors. Chen yesterday
TRILLION PROPOSED: The premier said the goal was to keep ‘businesses solvent, the unemployment rate down, transportation and logistics going, and cash flowing’ The Executive Yuan yesterday announced an expanded economic stimulus package totaling NT$1.05 trillion (US$34.64 billion), including NT$81.6 billion in subsidies for employers to prevent a spike in unemployment. The increased budget comprises a special budget of NT$210 billion, up from the NT$60 billion already passed by the Legislative Yuan; NT$140 billion — up from NT$40 billion — to be appropriated from the general budget; and NT$700 billion in loans to industries affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics Minister Chu Tzer-ming (朱澤民) told a news conference at the Executive Yuan in Taipei. The NT$150 billion increase in the
The Central Epidemic Command Center yesterday released a set of revised criteria for reporting suspected COVID-19 cases, while also announcing its guidelines for disclosing patients’ personal information. The center said that its advisory specialist panel revised the definition for “severe pneumonia with novel pathogens” — COVID-19 infection — by expanding the criteria needed to report suspected cases. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that physicians should report people for testing if they meet one of three clinical conditions: They have a fever, acute respiratory infection, or a lack of smell or taste; there is a