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09 Dec 11. Texas Instruments Inc. and Altera Corp. cut their guidance for the fourth quarter as worries about the broader economy led to weaker demand across most of the chip makers’ end markets. The outlooks sent chip stocks lower in after-hours trading and signaled that the downturn wasn’t yet behind the industry. Semiconductor companies in general have posted softer results in recent quarters because of weakening demand, but some observers were hoping the market had reached its low point.
Thursday, TI and Altera warned that demand was lower across a wide range of markets, customers and products, and each noted that customers are still reducing inventories. Chip companies have been waiting for customers to work through their excess products. (Source: WSJ)

08 Dec 11. Esterline Corporation (NYSE: ESL – News) reported results for its fiscal 2011 fourth quarter and fiscal year ended October 28, 2011, and initiated forward-looking guidance for the first quarter and full fiscal year of 2012. For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2011, Esterline reported sales of $502.4m and income from continuing operations of $19.4m, or $0.62 per diluted share. The company noted that results for the fourth quarter include certain after-tax discrete items of $18.3m, or $(0.59) per share. Year-ago fourth quarter sales were $430.5m, with income from continuing operations of $49.3m, or $1.60 per diluted share. For the full fiscal year ending October 26, 2012, the company estimates sales of $2.0bn to $2.1bn growing 16% to 22% from the prior year, with fully diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $5.00 to $5.30 growing 17% to 24%. The full-year EPS range incorporates first quarter EPS of $0.40 to $0.50, including a charge of $(0.27). This non-cash charge covers the remainder of the GAAP-required inventory write-up associated with the company’s acquisition of the Souriau Group in July. First quarter sales are expected to reach $480m. New orders in fiscal 2011 were $1.87bn compared with $1.55bn for fiscal 2010. Primarily reflecting Souriau, backlog increased to $1.25bn at October 28, 2011, compared with $1.10bn at the end of the prior year.

07 Dec 11. AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV – News) reported financial results for its second quarter ending October 29, 2011. Revenue for the second quarter of fiscal 2012 was $80.4m, up 26% over second quarter fiscal 2011 revenue of $63.8m. The increase in revenue resulted from increased sales in our Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) segment of $13.3m and in our Efficient Energy Systems (EES) segment of $3.3m. Income from operations for the second quarter of fiscal 2012 was $9.6m, an increase of $9.2m from second quarter fiscal 2011 income from operations of $0.4m. The increase in income from operations resulted from higher gross margin of $8.9m and lower selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expense of $0.4m, offset by higher research and development (R&D) expense of $0.1m. Net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2012 was $6.6m, an increase of $6.3m from second quarter fiscal 2011 net income of $0.3 m. Earnings per diluted share for the second quarter of fiscal 2012 were $0.30, an increase of $0.29 from second quarter fiscal 2011 earnings per diluted share of $0.01. Revenue for the first six months of fiscal 2012 was $142.4m, up 40% from the first six months of fiscal 2011 revenue of $102.0m. The increase in revenue resulted from higher sales in our UAS segment of $32.1m and in our EES segment of $8.3m. Income from operations for the first six months of fiscal 2012 was $10.0m, an increase of $16.9m from the first six months of fiscal 2011 loss from operations of $6.9m. The increase in income from operations resulted from higher gross margin of $18.5m and lower R&D expense of $0.3m, offset by higher SG&A expense of $1.9m. Net income for the first six months of fiscal 2012 was $6.9m, an increase of $10.1m from the first six months of fiscal 2011 net loss of $3.2m. Earnings per diluted share for the first six

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