Advanced Micro Devices did little to settle a nervous silicon sector yesterday when it predicted a strong second half performance but balked at actually setting firm guidance for the rest of the year.
The fuzzy forecast came as AMD announced a strong performance in the second quarter, which showed both its CPU and flash businesses showing growth, and the company in profit for the third quarter in a row.
Sales at the vendor were $1.26bn, up 95% on the year. It showed operating profits of $72m, compared to a loss of $123.5m last year, and net profit of $32.2m, compared to a $140.1m loss a year ago. This produced earnings per share of $0.09, matching analysts’ estimates.
AMD’s memory group showed sales of $673m in the quarter, and operating income of $45m. Its computation products group had sales of $554m, and operating income of $58m.
AMD’s figures came a day after Intel reported its second quarter results, saying it was seeing some inventory build and setting guidance that disappointed some industry watchers. There are concerns that the chip market’s recovery from the post-2000 crash may have peaked.
In a statement yesterday, AMD said economic and industry conditions remain uncertain and continue to make it difficult to forecast product demand. It said it expected that sales would increase at each of its major businesses in the third quarter, and that overall sales would increase moderately.
In a question and answer session with analysts, AMD’s management were pressured to be more specific. CFO Bob Rivet said that the firm expected the second half of the year would be seasonally up. He said the third quarter would be modestly up and added, decode, it’s good.
Hector de Ruiz, chairman, president and CEO, said the company expected to continue to modestly gain share in the market.
Ruiz also played down the extent to which Intel’s performance was a predictor for AMD’s market, saying the company had built its own market ecosystem around its AMD 64: The comparisons become less important, and maybe somewhat irrelevant.
For the year to date, AMD’s sales are $2.5bn, up 83.7%, while net income so far is $77.3m, compared to last year’s $286m loss.