TI, National Semi Say Chip Woes Continue

National Semi (NYSE: NSM) and Texas Instruments (NYSE: TXN) on Monday became the latest chip companies to say the rapidly slowing economy is hurting sales.

TI shares fell 5% in late trading after the company said it expects to earn 10 to 16 cents a share on sales of $2.3 billion to $2.5 billion this quarter, well below Thomson Financial estimates of 31-cent earnings and $2.91 billion in sales. The warning wasn’t a complete surprise following downbeat comments in recent weeks from Nokia (NYSE: NOK), its biggest customer.

National Semi shares slid 7% after the bell after the company said it expects a 30% sequential decline in sales this quarter. The company cited “significantly lower than usual demand levels in the post-holiday season, especially for personal mobile devices.”

Altera (NASDAQ: ALTR) and Broadcom (NASDAQ: BRCM) also lowered their guidance late Monday.

But even though the economic backdrop remains the worst in decades, stocks rallied again during Monday’s trading session on hopes for a bailout of the auto industry and a massive infrastructure spending plan from the incoming Obama Administration.

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT), Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO), Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), IBM (NYSE: IBM) and HP (NYSE: HPQ) were a few of the tech names topping the Nasdaq’s 4% advance.

Sun (NASDAQ: JAVA) soared nearly 10% on news that the company has given activist shareholder Southeastern Asset Management two seats on its board of directors, raising speculation that the company could make moves to increase shareholder value. Southeastern owns 22 percent of Sun’s stock.

Dell (NASDAQ: DELL) jumped 12% on reports that it’s trying to acquire Brazilian hardware and software maker Positivo Informatica.

The Nasdaq surged 62 to 1571, the S&P gained 33 to 1909, and the Dow rose 298 to 8934. Volume rose to 7.33 billion shares on the NYSE, and 2.35 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led by a 30-8 margin on the NYSE, and 21-8 on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 86% on the NYSE, and 85% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 21-74 on the NYSE, and 8-90 on the Nasdaq.

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