U.S. News

Micron 'Bullish' On Memory Prices, Reports Quarterly Loss


Micron Technology said that prices for memory chips have stabilized in recent days, and it expects strong demand for the rest of 2007.

"Prices steadily declined since January into and through the first month of fiscal Q3. In the past several days, we have seen both DRAM and NAND prices stabilize," Mike Sadler, Micron's vice president of sales, said during a conference call.

"We are quite bullish on demand prospects for the balance of this year as electronic equipment unit sales continue to be robust and a variety of factors are leading to strong content growth for both DRAM and NAND flash," Sadler said.

Investors bid up shares of the top U.S. memory chip maker in after-hours trading, despite Micron also reporting a quarterly loss due to feeble demand for image sensors in addition to weak memory prices.

Micron said the net loss for its fiscal second quarter was $52 million, or 7 cents a share, compared with a profit of $193.2 million, or 27 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue rose 16.5% from the year-ago period to $1.43 billion.

Wall Street analysts had expected Micron to lose a penny a share on sales of $1.47 billion.

Micron said it saw "significant declines" in prices for much of its product line, including a 30% drop in prices for NAND flash, the kind of memory chip commonly used in consumer electronics.

Image sensors, which have been a growth area for Micron as it diversifies away from the volatile memory market, saw sales decline sequentially due to weak demand for mobile handsets and a market shift toward lower-priced phones, the company said.