Micron's mixed guidance weighs on shares but analysts see pullback as a buying opportunity

September 27, 2023 4:56 PM EDT
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(Updated - September 28, 2023 5:32 AM EDT) - Micron reported Wednesday better-than-feared fiscal fourth-quarter results, but a mixed picture on the outlook for the first quarter amid a challenging backdrop as the chip supply glut continued to keep a lid on demand.

Micron Technology Inc (NASDAQ: MU) fell 5% in early Thursday trade following the report.

Micron reported an adjusted loss of $1.07 a share on revenue of $4.01 billion. Analysts polled by anticipated an adjusted loss of $1.15 a share on revenue of $3.93B

Gross margins slipped to negative 10.8% from 39.5% a year earlier following a nearly 40% slip in revenue amid weaker demand as companies work through an oversupply of chips build up during the pandemic.

For the fiscal first quarter, the company guided for a loss in a range of $1 to $1.14 a share versus consensus for a loss of $0.92 a share, and revenue of $4.2B to $4.6B versus consensus of $4.22B.

"Our 2023 performance positions us well as a market recovery takes shape in 2024, driven by increasing demand and disciplined supply. We look forward to record industry TAM revenue in 2025 as AI proliferates from the data center to the edge," CEO Sanjay Mehrotra said.

Speaking on the earnings call, the CEO commented that Micron expects revenue from high-bandwidth memory chips designed for data centers “to begin in early 2024.”

JPMorgan analyst Harlan Sur raised the price target by $5 to $80 per share on the Overweight-rated MU shares as "memory industry starts upturn."

"We believe the stock continues to move in a positive direction as we progress through 2023 and into 2024 as the market continues to discount improving revenue/pricing/margin/earnings power," Sur wrote in a client note.

Goldman Sachs analyst Toshiya Hari commented in a similar manner.

"Despite what now appears to be a slower than previously expected recovery in gross margins and EPS, our constructive thesis on the stock predicated on improving demand and supply discipline (i.e. reduction in Wafer Fab Equipment spending and wafer starts) remains unchanged and, as such, we would view any pullback in the stock as an opportunity to add to positions."

Additional reporting by Senad Karaahmetovic

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