Linear Technology 1Q net declines

MILPITAS, Calif. -- Circuit maker Linear Technology Corp. said Tuesday that its first-quarter net income fell because of weak orders, and it warned that second-quarter revenue would be weaker than in the quarter it just wrapped up.

The company said it earned $105.2 million, or 45 cents per share, for the quarter that ended Sept. 30. That was down from $108.4 million, or 47 cents per share, during the same period last year.

Revenue rose 1.6 percent to $335.1 million, from $329.9 million a year ago.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet had been anticipating a profit of 46 cents per share on revenue of $334.7 million.

The company said sales for the automotive market have increased, but other big categories have fallen, especially industrial and computer markets.

"Forecasting continues to be difficult in the current environment," CEO Lothar Maier said. "Though customer inventory levels appear to be at reasonable levels, demand continues to be sluggish and orders have not shown signs of improvement as we begin the second quarter."

He said the company expects revenue to fall 5 percent to 10 percent in the current quarter from the just-completed quarter. That would give it revenue of about $302 million to $318 million. Analysts had been expecting revenue of $336.7 million.

Linear Technology shares had risen 52 cents to close at $32.56 before the announcement. They fell $1.21, or 3.7 percent, to $31.35 in aftermarket trading.