TI’s Tough Quarter Tops Forecasts

Texas Instruments (NYSE: TXN) reported a sharp drop in sales and profits late Monday, but that was still better than Wall Street analysts were looking for.

TI’s revenues fell 30% to $2.49 billion, better than $2.37 billion forecasts, while pro forma earnings of 21 cents a share were 9 cents better than the Thomson Reuters consensus forecast.

TI also said it plans a 12% job reduction through layoffs and voluntary departures.

In a statement, CEO Rich Templeton said, “We are not counting on a near-term economic rebound for improvement. The actions we are taking to reduce expenses and inventory will position TI to deliver solid financial results, even in a period of prolonged economic weakness. When the economy strengthens, we’ll be pleased that we focused aggressively on our core product lines.”

The chip maker also warned that it could post a loss in the current quarter, but its shares rose 5% in late trading.

Also after the close, VMware (NYSE: VMW) shares were little changed on mixed results.

Stocks posted modest gains during the day despite tough earnings reports and layoffs from the likes of Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) and Sprint (NYSE: S) and weakness in bank stocks, as investors cheered better than expected housing and leading economic indicators reports.

Philips (NYSE: PHG) gained 10% despite reporting a loss and layoffs, and Satyam (NYSE: SAY) gained 12% on hopes for additional funding.

Research in Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) shares were weak on a Wall Street Journal report of glitches in the new BlackBerry Storm, news that boosted shares of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL).

Tuesday will be another busy day for earnings reports, with EMC (NYSE: EMC), Tellabs (NASDAQ: TLAB) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ) reporting in the morning, and Sun (NASDAQ: JAVA) and Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO) after the close.

The Nasdaq rose 12 to 1489, the S&P 500 gained 4 to 836, and the Dow climbed 38 to 8166. Volume declined to 6.12 billion shares on the NYSE, and 1.87 billion on the Nasdaq. Advancers led by a 24-13 margin on the NYSE, and 17-10 edge on the Nasdaq. Upside volume was 56% on the NYSE, and 66% on the Nasdaq. New highs-new lows were 7-88 on the NYSE, and 9-112 on the Nasdaq.

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