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Intel shares rise then settle after earnings beat estimates

  • Intel reported per-share earnings of 72 cents or the second quarter, passing analysts' expectations.
  • Intel's newest server chip line could drive future growth, one analyst says.

Intel stock jumped as high as 4 percent in after-hours trading on Thursday after it reported better-than-expected earnings for the second quarter, but then the share price fell back to nearly flat.

  • EPS: Excluding certain items, EPS of 72 cents vs. 68 cents in earnings per share expected by analysts, according to Thomson Reuters.
  • Revenue: $14.76 billion, vs. $14.41 billion in revenue expected by analysts for the quarter, according to Thomson Reuters.

The results come after Intel barely beat expectations on EPS and fell just below expectations on revenue in the first quarter.

While Intel's Client Computing Group brings in more revenue than any other business segment, the company has been shifting away from the personal computer market, as PC shipments continue to decline. In the past few quarters, Intel has faced a fresh wave of competition from AMD's Ryzen PC chips. Intel explored the markets for wearable devices and the maker community, but it recently closed itshealth wearables group and it has sought to kill off some Internet of Things products.

But in the second quarter the Client Computing Group made a strong showing with 12 percent revenue growth at $8.2 billion in revenue.

The Internet of Things Group, for its part, was up a hefty 26 percent year over year, at $720 million in revenue.

Intel's typically high-margin Data Center Group, which includes sales to public cloud infrastructure providers and also competes with AMD, is key – last year its revenue rose 8 percent year over year, compared with the Client Computing Group's 2 percent growth. This time around, the Data Center Group was up 9 percent at $4.4 billion.

Earlier this month the Data Center Group unveiled its next generation Xeon Scalable chips, codenamed Purley. "We believe that Intel's Data Center Group segment could deliver faster growth as Purley ramps," MKM Partners managing director Ruben Roy wrote in a note last week.

Meanwhile, the company has been talking up its opportunity in artificial intelligence, thanks to acquisitions of companies like Altera, Nervana, Mobileye and Movidius.

Altera is part of the newly formed Programmable Solutions Group, which had the worst performance of the quarter for Intel -- $440 million in revenue, which is down 5 percent year over year.

The top performer was Intel's Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group, whose revenue of $874 million was a record high, up year over year by 58 percent.

With respect to guidance, Intel says it's expecting 80 cents in earnings per share on $15.7 billion in revenue for the third quarter. For the full year, the company expects $3 in earnings per share and $61.3 billion in revenue.

On the company's conference call with financial analysts, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich committed to a spending target of 30 percent of revenue and said he's expecting the company to reach that goal no later than 2020. The company will make these ongoing changes to meet that goal while also driving growth, Krzanich said.

The $15.3 billion acquisition of Mobileye that Intel announced in March should close before the fourth quarter, "several months ahead of schedule," as Axios' Ina Fried noted on Twitter.

Intel stock is down 3.5 percent since the beginning of the year.

Earlier this month Hilliard Lyons initiated coverage of Intel, writing that "while we note competition is fierce and continues to increase, we believe Intel is in a strong position to outperform peers on a risk-adjusted basis over the coming five-year time frame."