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WDC

Western Digital

$54.00

1.71 (3.27%)

, STX

Seagate

$42.67

0.99 (2.38%)

13:24
10/25/18
10/25
13:24
10/25/18
13:24

Fly Intel: What to watch in data storage earnings reports

Companies in the data storage sector are set to begin their earnings season with Western Digital (WDC) reporting fiscal first quarter earnings after the market close on Thursday, October 25 with a conference call scheduled for 5:30 pm ET. Seagate (STX), a Western Digital rival, is set to report Q1 results before the market open on Friday, November 2, with a conference call scheduled for 9:00 am ET. What to watch for: 1. GUIDANCE: Along with its last report, Western Digital guided for Q1 earnings per share in a range of $3.00-$3.10 on revenue ov $5.1B-$5.2B. At the time, analysts were expecting the company to report Q1 EPS of $3.57 on revenue of $5.4B, but those figures have since dropped to $3.04 and $5.14B, respectively. Additionally, Seagate also provided its outlook for Q1 in its last report, guiding for sequential Q1 revenue growth of approximately 5% as well as gross margin at the midpoint of its 29%-33% long-term range. At the time, analysts expected Seagate to report Q1 revenue of $2.85B, but that figure has since jumped to $2.97B. 2. BENCHMARK, RBC BOTH CUT WDC PRICE TARGET: Late last month, Benchmark analyst Mark Miller cut his price target on Western Digital to $110 from $120 but maintained a Buy rating on the stock. The analyst said at the time that he believes the shares have been pressured by NAND pricing declines, but he thinks that NAND chip pricing is likely to stabilize. Miller noted at the time that he also expects continued double digit growth in storage demand. Earlier this month, RBC Capital analyst Ami Daryanani maintained his Sector Perform rating on Western Digital but cut his price target on the shares to $68 from $70, saying that the ongoing CPU shortages at Intel (INTC) that were on display "minimally" last quarter" will get even more magnified int he December quarter. The analyst added that while Intel's plans to invest $1B to resolve capacity issues will address the issue by the first half of 2019, the company is also exposed to the risk of hyperscale customers adjusting their inventory and reducing purchases. Daryanani also cut his price target on Seagate to $60 from $62 with a maintained Sector Perform rating, citing the same rationale. 3. GOLDMAN CUTS SEAGATE, WDC PRICE TARGETS: On September 12, Goldman Sachs analyst Mark Delaney cut his price target for Neutral-rated Western Digital to $63 from $80 and Sell-rated Seagate to $39 from $44 after updating his DRAM and NAND industry models and outlook. Delaney said at the time that, for DRAM, he expects slightly oversupply in 2019, and for NAND he expects oversupply in 2018 and 2019 but to a greater extent than his previous view. The analyst at the time said he assumes improvement in the second half of 2019 for both DRAM and NAND. 4. SUSQUEHANNA DOWNGRADES SEAGATE: Earlier this week, Susquehanna analyst Mehdi Hosseini downgraded Seagate to Negative from Neutral and cut his price target on the shares to $32 from $53, saying that his recent checks point to cloud procurement entering a downturn, not just a period of "digestion." The analyst said that such a downturn will hit Seagate "where it hurts the most," namely in the profitable and growing Nearline segment. Hosseini added that his checks indicate a continued erosion in NAND average selling prices.

WDC

Western Digital

$54.00

1.71 (3.27%)

STX

Seagate

$42.67

0.99 (2.38%)

INTC

Intel

$44.12

1.7 (4.01%)

  • 25

    Oct

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    Oct

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    Nov

WDC Western Digital
$54.00

1.71 (3.27%)

09/21/18
BNCH
09/21/18
NO CHANGE
Target $110
BNCH
Buy
Benchmark says NAND pricing expected to stabilize, keeps Western Digital at Buy
Benchmark analyst Mark Miller believes Western Digital shares have been pressured by NAND pricing declines, but he thinks NAND chip pricing is likely to stabilize. He also expects continued double digit growth in storage demand, leading him to maintain a Buy rating on the shares. However, Miller lowered his price target on Western Digital to $110 from $120.
10/25/18
STFL
10/25/18
NO CHANGE
STFL
Hynix outlook should ease fears of extended memory downturn, says Stifel
SK Hynix in last night's Q3 earnings report saw a sequential increase in gross margin with slightly higher DRAM average selling prices quarter-over-quarter while NAND Flash selling prices s declined at roughly the same rate as in Q2, Stifel analyst Kevin Cassidy tells investors in a research note. Importantly, Hynix expects the current pricing pressure to have a short duration with customers decreasing NAND flash inventories by the end of 2018 and data center DRAM demand re-accelerating in mid-2019, says Cassidy. He believes the company's outlook and the "rational response" to the pricing environment should alleviate some market concerns about an extended downturn in the memory cycle. This benefits suppliers such as Micron Technology (MU), Smart Global Holdings (SGH) and Western Digital (WDC), Cassidy tells investors. Shares of Micron in early trading are up 49c to $35.92.
10/01/18
RBCM
10/01/18
NO CHANGE
Target $68
RBCM
Western Digital price target lowered to $68 from $70 at RBC Capital
RBC Capital analyst Amit Daryanani lowered his price target on Western Digital (WDC) to $68 and kept his Sector Perform rating. The analyst contends that the ongoing CPU shortages at Intel (INTC) that were on display "minimally" last quarter will get even more magnified in the December quarter. Daryanani adds that while Intel's intentions to invest $1B to resolve capacity issues will address the issue by the first half of 2019, the company is also exposed to the risk of hyperscale customers adjusting their inventory and reducing purchases. The analyst lowers his FY18 EPS view on Western Digital to $9.88 from $9.99 and FY19 revenue view to $19.5B from $19.7B. Daryanani also lowers his price target on Seagate (STX) to $60 from $62 with a maintained Sector Perform rating, citing the same rationale.
10/01/18
MZHO
10/01/18
DOWNGRADE
Target $65
MZHO
Neutral
Western Digital downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Mizuho
Mizuho analyst Vijay Rakesh downgraded Western Digital (WDC) to Neutral and lowered his price target for the shares to $65 from $100. After a trip to Asia, the analyst believes NAND average selling prices will continue to decline at a low-double digit rate through Q1 of 2019 and at a high-single digit rate through 2019. The current consensus estimate for flat gross margins "could see significant downside," Rakesh tells investors in a research note. The analyst this morning also downgraded Lam Research (LRCX) to Neutral and lowered his price target for Micron Technology (MU) to $60. However, he remains positive on Micron shares citing the company's "more DRAM discipline," faster stabilization and its $10B share buyback.
STX Seagate
$42.67

0.99 (2.38%)

10/23/18
SUSQ
10/23/18
DOWNGRADE
SUSQ
Negative
Seagate downgraded to Negative from Neutral at Susquehanna
10/23/18
10/23/18
DOWNGRADE

Susquehanna downgrades Memory/Storage sector on cloud downturn
Susquehanna analyst Mehdi Hosseini downgraded his view on the Memory/Storage sector, stating that top executives at Cloud service providers and Enterprise customers appear to have become more cautious about 2019 spending plans and the "digestion period" he has been anticipating by YE18 and into 1H19 appears to have evolved into a more worrisome "downturn." His updated view is that DRAM average selling prices will trend worse than prior expectations in the first half of 2019 and although NAND spending plans for the second half of 2018 have already been reduced, he expects more downward revisions there too. Overall, he now expects memory spending in 2019 to decline by 10%-15% year-over-year, which he notes is worse than his prior expectation of memory spending being down 8%-10%. As previously reported, Hosseini downgraded both Micron Technology (MU) and SK Hynix to Neutral from Positive and downgraded Seagate (STX) to Negative from Neutral.
10/23/18
SUSQ
10/23/18
DOWNGRADE
Target $32
SUSQ
Negative
Seagate downgraded to Negative on cloud downturn at Susquehanna
As previously reported, Susquehanna analyst Mehdi Hosseini downgraded Seagate to Negative from Neutral, stating that his recent checks point to cloud procurement entering a downturn, not just a period of "digestion." Such a downturn will hit Seagate "where it hurts the most," namely in the profitable and growing Nearline segment, the analyst tells investors. Additionally, his checks suggest a continued erosion in NAND average selling prices, which he view as likely to accelerate SSD cannibalization of Seagate's client HDD segment, Hosseini noted. He lowered his price target on Seagate shares to $32 from $53.
INTC Intel
$44.12

1.7 (4.01%)

10/22/18
BFIN
10/22/18
NO CHANGE
BFIN
Intel has resolved 10nm process issues, says BlueFin
BlueFin's checks with suppliers indicates Intel has resolved their 10nm process issues.
10/23/18
LEHM
10/23/18
UPGRADE
Target $25
LEHM
Equal Weight
AMD ready to put pressure on Intel, Barclays says in upgrade to Equal Weight
Barclays analyst Blayne Curtis upgraded AMD (AMD) to Equal Weight from Underweight with an unchanged price target of $25. The chipmaker closed yesterday up 6%, or $1.37, to $25.03. The analyst is using the recent pullback in AMD shares to upgrade the stock while he reiterates an Underweight rating on Intel (INTC). Curtis, who admits to being surprised by how much credit AMD got this year, says the company is "ready to put pressure on Intel." Heading into 2019, the "competitive pressure should get very real," Curtis tells investors in a research note. The analyst is "surprised by the notion that Intel delivering 10nm client products in 2019 on schedule is now a positive and would highlight that it still does nothing to help Intel navigate a 12-18 month gap in servers."
10/25/18
MZHO
10/25/18
NO CHANGE
Target $33
MZHO
Buy
Mizuho a buyer of AMD on today's post-earnings selloff
Mizuho analyst Vijay Rakesh is a buyer of AMD (AMD) on the selloff today following last night's results. The chipmaker reported an in-line September quarter and guided its December quarter "modestly below consensus," Rakesh tells investors in a research note. While he sees GPU inventory declining, the analyst believes AMD's server market share trajectory should be a "key driver" into 2019 with 7nm EPYC already widely sampling 12 months ahead of Intel (INTC). Rakesh keeps a Buy rating on AMD and trimmed his price target to $33. The stock in premarket trading is down 18%, or $4.14, to $18.65.
10/25/18
JEFF
10/25/18
NO CHANGE
Target $30
JEFF
Buy
Jefferies finds positives in AMD results, calls selloff an overreaction
Jefferies analyst Mark Lipacis says that while AMD's (AMD) Q3 earnings beat by 1c due to better margins, its Q4 outlook missed expectations due to excess GPU channel inventories. On the positive side, it appears AMD will ship a 7nm server microprocessor units "well ahead" of Intel (INTC), as well as a 7nm data center GPU "well ahead" of Nvidia (NVDA), Lipacis tells investors in a post-earnings research note titled "4Q GPU Disappointment, but Share Gain and GM expansion Story Intact." The analyst expects this will translate to share gains and continued gross margin expansion for AMD. While he lowered his estimates, and dropped his price target for the shares to $30 from $36, Lipacis views the post-earnings selloff as an overreaction. He's a buyer on weakness and keeps a Buy rating on AMD. The chipmaker in premarket trading is down 20%, or $4.54, to $18.25.

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