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Applied Materials Profit Falls Amid Chip Sales Slump

Applied Materials, the No. 1 computer-chip equipment maker, posted a lower quarterly profit as revenue slid 28 percent amid a slump in its industry.

Applied said on Tuesday net income for its third fiscal quarter fell to $164.8 million, or 12 cents per share, from $473.5 million, or 34 cents per share, a year ago. Revenue fell to $1.85 billion from $2.56 billion.

Applied, along with others in the chip equipment industry, have suffered from a glut of manufacturing capacity in the memory chip market.

The company said that while its semiconductor-related business was down in the quarter, revenue rose in its display, service and fast-growing solar businesses.

Chief Executive Mike Splinter said the results were in line with its forecast for the just-reported quarter ''during a difficult semiconductor industry environment.''

The company had forecast earnings per share of 10 cents to 14 cents on revenue of $1.76 billion to $1.93 billion.

Analysts had expected, on average, revenue of $1.84 billion in the third quarter, according to Reuters Estimates.

New orders of $2.03 billion in the third quarter were down 11 percent from a year ago and decreased 16 percent from the second quarter, Applied said.

But the backlog at the end of the quarter was $4.74 billion, up from $4.59 billion at the end of the previous quarter.

Applied Materials shares were down about 1 percent in extended trading. The stock finished marginally higher during the regular market session, rising 0.05 percent to $18.47.

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