Micron Reports Mixed Results

Micron reported mixed results after the close Wednesday, beating earnings estimates but missing sales estimates.

Micron reported quarterly earnings of $89 million, or 12 cents a share, reversing a year-ago loss and beating estimates by two cents. But sales of $1.31 billion were below $1.37 billion forecasts.

Margins posted a 6-point sequential gain to 25% on higher DRAM pricing, and CMOS and imaging sales were strong. For the first time, products other than PC DRAM devices comprised a majority of Micron’s sales.

But flat memory sales and the revenue miss sent Micron shares 2% lower in late trading.

Also after the close, Red Hat beat sales estimates but missed earnings estimates, with subscription revenues up 45%. 3Com announced a restructuring.

During the day, stocks regained some of Tuesday’s losses ahead of the Federal Reserve’s decision on interest rates due out Thursday afternoon.

The Nasdaq rose 11 to 2111, the S&P 500 gained 6 to 1246, and the Dow climbed 48 to 10,973. Volume declined to 2.1 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.65 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led 19-12 on the NYSE, and 16-14 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 64% on the NYSE, and 63% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 25-224 on the NYSE, and 44-177 on the Nasdaq.

Wireless stocks got hit by a J.P. Morgan report of weakness at Nokia . Texas Instruments , RF Micro and Motorola were among those losing ground on the research note.

Stock option grant practices continued to be an issue, with Rambus , CNET and Applied Micro the latest to get hit by the issue.

Apple fell 2.5% after American Technology Research reported potential iPod product delays.

Netgear fell 11% on a Needham “hold” rating.

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