Micron misses revenue, earnings targets

Weakened demand, steep DRAM price cuts cause earnings to fall 24%

Micron Technology (NASDAQ: MU) on Wednesday announced fiscal 2011 first-quarter results that showed profitability and revenue growth, but missed Wall Street estimates. (Also see: Micron turns first annual profit in 4 years)

Shares were holding their own after hours, trading at 8.37, 9 cents, or 1.1 percent, above Wednesday's regular-session closing price of 8.28. Since closing at 11.30 on April 14, Micron shares are down 27 percent through Wednesday. For the quarter ended Dec. 2, Micron reported net income of $155 million, or 15 cents a share, 24 percent below net income of $204 million, or 23 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Consensus estimates called for a quarterly profit of 29 cents a share. Micron's revenue in Q1 was $2.3 billion, just short of analyst estimates of $2.38 billion, but 35 percent above the company's $1.7 billion in revenue in the year-ago quarter. Steep price cuts in computer memory were cited by Micron for its Q1 gross margin falling to 23 percent from 25 percent a year ago and 31 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Chris Nerney writes about the business side of technology market strategies and trends, legal issues, leadership changes, mergers, venture capital, IPOs and technology stocks. Follow him on Twitter @ChrisNerney.

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