Texas Instruments Inc. (TXN), narrowed today its expected ranges for revenue and earnings per share during co.’s mid-quarter update. The Dallas-based co. now expects its revenues to be in the range of $3.33 to $3.47 billion, from $3.26 to $3.54 billion it had previously forecast. The semiconductor maker also expects earnings of $0.42 to $0.46 a share. That compares with a prior range of $0.41 to $0.47. The outlook countered predictions by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Raymond James & Associates, who had projected TI would trim its outlook. TXN rose $1.14 to $22.85 up 5.25% in extended trading. The co’s update follows a worse than expected outlook from Nokia (NOK) last week, and below consensus Sept quarter guidance from several semi-equipment makers including Applied Material (AMAT), KLA-Tencor Corp. (KLAC) and Novellus systems (NVLS).
Herald Tribune: The decision out of OPEC’s meeting in Vienna suggested that the cartel of thirteen countries responsible for the stabilization of prices in international oil markets, would maintain current production levels, even as some members of the organization expressed concerns about rapidly declining prices. Before the meeting OPEC members appeared deeply split with one camp, led by Iran and Venezuela, in favor of output reduction to stem further price drops, and another, led by the Saudis, wishing to allow prices to fall a bit further. Ending the speculation was Opec’s president, Chakib Khelil, who said the cartel was likely to keep its production unchanged prompting October crude oil to extend its five month low to $103.85. However, several hours later FT reports, Opec surprised the oil markets by reversing its earlier decision of maintaining production levels unchanged, announcing that it would now make a small but symbolic reduction in its output since the cartel views the market as oversupplied. [HT]
The Wall Street Journal: Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs announced Tuesday, during Apple’s “Let’s Rock” San Francisco event, a revamped line of iPods and a truce with NBC Universal. The San Francisco event was the first major public appearance by Mr. Job since June when his appearance prompted concerns about his health. Jobs, who appeared healthy, confronted the rumors head-on. The first thing he did after walking on the stage dressed in his trademark mock turtleneck and jeans, was to quote Mark Twain. “Reports of my death” he said “are greatly exaggerated”. Then he went on to announce a reconciliation with General Electric Co.’s NBC Universal, which removed its TV shows from Apple’s iTunes Store last year after Apple resisted NBC’s requests to allow more flexibility in the pricing of episodes. In short, NBC’s television programs have returned to the iTunes stores selling NBC episodes for $1.99 each, the original price. Later CNBC reported that Steve Jobs blamed health scare on unnamed hedge funds that are short Apple (AAPL) stock. [WSJ]
EETimes: Japan was the first country to introduce federal solar subsidies, but the government eliminated them in 2005. This led to some of its solar-cell makers getting beat in the global market. Q-Cells in Germany for instance – overtook Sharp as the world’s largest supplier last year followed by China’s Suntech Power which kicked Kyocera out of the third place. The Korean government, notes EETimes, following Japan’s example in introducing federal subsidies – has been rolling out a number of incentives and subsidies to create a domestic market for solar panels. This market has attracted the attention of Korean display giants Samsung and LG Electronics. Both co.’s will join the global rush to make photovoltaic solar cells (field of technology which converts sunlight directly into electricity) starting next year. According to market watcher DisplayBank (Seoul), Korea could deliver more than $8 billion in solar modules generating 2.6 Gigawatts by 2013. This is an indication that South Korea, which has strong electronics manufacturing and shipbuilding industries, is quickly becoming a hot emerging market for solar panel and system makers. [EETimes]