RealTime IT News

AMAT's Orders Disappoint

Applied Materials posted quarterly results late Tuesday that beat Wall Street estimates and offered solid guidance, but investors were more concerned about a predicted drop in orders.

AMAT's sales grew 13% to $2.53 billion, beating $2.36 billion estimates, and pro forma earnings of 36 cents a share were 8 cents better than anticipated. The chip equipment giant also offered current quarter guidance that was better than expected, but predictions of a 10-15% drop in orders — an important indicator of future growth — and declining gross margins weighed on AMAT shares, which declined 4% after hours on top of a 3% decline during the day.

Also after the close, Oracle announced plans to buy Agile Software .

Stocks were mixed once again Tuesday, as an early rally on tame consumer inflation data gave way to selling in the tech sector on economic slowdown fears.

Agilent and MetroPCS gained on their results, while Sina , Telestone , China TechFaith and STEC fell on their numbers.

Reuters gained on a merger deal with Thomson .

The Nasdaq fell 21 to 2525, the S&P 500 lost 2 to 1501, and the Dow rose 37 to 13,383. Volume rose to 3.11 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.29 billion on the Nasdaq. Declining issues led by a 19-12 margin on the NYSE, and 21-9 on the Nasdaq. Downside volume was 58% on the NYSE, and 77% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 212-38 on the NYSE, and 135-123 on the Nasdaq.