Micron forecasts surprise loss for current quarter

New york: Micron Technology Inc forecast a surprise loss for the second quarter, as the memory chipmaker struggles with weak demand for chips used in personal computers and lower average selling prices. The estimate of its first loss in more than two years sent the company’s shares down 5.7 percent to $13.78 in extended trading on Tuesday.

Micron, which makes DRAM and NAND flash memory chips, forecast a loss of 5-12 cents per share and revenue of $2.9 billion-$3.2 billion for the current quarter ending March 5. Analysts on average were expecting a profit of 22 cents and revenue of $3.46 billion, according to Reuters. “We have a perfect storm going on here,” Wedbush Securities analyst Betsy Van Hees said.

“We have a seasonal weak quarter. We have weaker-than-expected end-market demand. We have pricing headwinds,” she said. Micron, which competes with Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and SK Hynix Inc, has been investing to ramp up production of its higher-margin 20 nm DRAM chips and develop more efficient and cost-effective 3D NAND chips. Micron earlier this month agreed to buy the remaining interest in Taiwanese chipmaker Inotera Memories Inc in a $3.2 billion deal. NAND flash memory chips are widely used in smartphones, cameras and other mobile devices to store music, pictures and other data, while DRAM chips are mostly used in personal computers.



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