Among the biggest winners in Wednesday's early trading are Intel (Nasdaq: INTC), Expeditors Int'l (Nasdaq: EXPD) and Adtran (Nasdaq: ADTN).
|Top Percentage Gainers -- Wednesday, July 14, 2010|
|Company Name (Ticker)||Intra-Day Price||Intra-Day
|52-Week High||52-Week Low|
|Adtran (Nasdaq: ADTN)||$31.05||+7.6%||$31.13||$20.34|
|Intel (Nasdaq: INTC)||$21.86||+4.1%||$24.37||$16.46|
*Table includes companies with minimum market capitalizations of $200 million and three month trading volumes of at least 100,000 shares. All percentage returns are listed as of 10:30AM Eastern Standard Time. Click on ticker symbols for up-to-the-minute price quotes and percentage gain data.
Intel sets a Positive Tone
Luckily for tech investors, Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) has weighed in with quarterly results at the very beginning of earnings season. Rather than wait it out for weeks to see if the sky is falling (as shares of high tech companies seem to indicate these days), Intel has quickly established a bullish tone for the whole tech sector. On Tuesday evening, the chip giant announced second quarter sales of $10.8 billion -- roughly +5% ahead of forecasts -- and earnings per share of $0.51, which was roughly +15% ahead of consensus estimates. That’s good for a +4% gain in Wednesday trading. The results are all the more impressive when you consider that Europe is likely mired in a slump. That means that the North American and Asian markets were robust.
Intel also spoke positively about anticipated results for the third quarter, noting that both sales and gross margins should come in above consensus estimates. Some of this strength is attributable to Intel’s market-leading position. But it’s also due to a robust level of spending on computers, which is why firms like Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) and Seagate (NYSE: STX) are also up nicely in Wednesday trading.
Action to Take --> With Wednesday’s gain, shares of Intel still seem reasonably priced at around 10 ten times likely fiscal 2011 profits. When investors come to believe that this rebound is sustainable, that forward price-to-earnings ratio (P/E) should move up into the 12 to 14 range.
Expeditors doesn’t see a Slowdown
Just as Intel has signaled a bullish tone for tech spending, Expeditors International (Nasdaq: EXPD) suggests that the broader economy is also faring well. The company provides a wide range of services to air and ocean-based freight shippers, and notes that all manners of shipping activity were strong in the second quarter. "Our customers seem to be doing well as compared with 2009," said chairman and CEO Peter Rose in a company press release.
Action to Take --> Expeditors pre-announced robust profits for its second quarter on Tuesday evening, though it declined to provide specific revenue details. However, investors shouldn’t get carried away with this stock. The +7% gain today leaves shares trading at more than 15 times likely upwardly revised projected 2011 profits. Considering that global economic headwinds remain in place, a higher multiple isn’t warranted right now.
Adtran validates Tyco
Just a day after its rival, ADC Telecom (Nasdaq: ADCT) agreed to be bought by Tyco (NYSE: TYC), Adtran (Nasdaq: ADTN) announced solid quarterly results. Sales rose +24% from a year ago, while profits surged +47%. Adtran provides high-speed network connection equipment to telecom operators and large enterprises. Management notes that demand is strong in every niche in which the company operates.
Action to Take --> We’ll have a deeper look at this whole group and identify what Tyco’s acquisition means, in a separate article later today.