Analysts Cheer Intel Corporation (INTC) As It Beats Second Quarter Earnings Expectations

Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) spurred interest on Wall Street when the company posted an upbeat second quarter earnings report after market close on July 15. In the report, Intel combined a promising outlook with a pledge to cut more spending. With PC demand projected to remain weak, some investors are now at ease thanks to the strong earnings report coupled with 3Q15 guidance above consensus.

The company reported revenue of $13.2 billion, operating income of $2.9 billion, net income of $2.7 billion and $0.5 earnings per share. The report matched the company’s guidance and beat analysts’ expectations. Furthermore, the company generated approximately $3.4 billion in cash from operations, dividends of $1.1 billion. The report also highlighted that Intel used of $697 million to repurchase 22 million shares of stock.

Intel also gave positive estimates for the third quarter, with a mid-point guidance of $14.3 billion in revenue, slightly higher than analyst estimates of $14.1 billion.

The company’s shares last closed at $29.69 on July 15, close to its 52-week low of $28.82. However, the powerful report helped lift Intel’s stock 3% in after-hours trading. This is good news for investors as shares of Intel have already fallen 18% year-to-date amid a weak PC market.

On July 16, FBR Capital analyst Christopher Rolland reiterated a Buy rating on Intel with a $38 price target, citing “better-than-expected 2Q15 results and 3Q15 guidance.”

The analyst notes that the news comes “primarily as PC channel inventories [are drawing down] more modestly than management’s original expectations.” He continues, “We strongly suspect the company was overly conservative on gross margins in 4Q15, and therefore street 2016 EPS may be understated.”

Rolland expresses that “a massive transfer of monetization from PC to datacenter is taking place.” Furthermore, “while Moore’s law is extending, Intel is the global leader in pushing this phenomenon and Intel should (eventually) benefit from the extra cost per transistor provided to the company,” Rolland concludes.

Christopher Rolland

When measured over a one-year horizon and no benchmark, Christopher Rolland has an overall success rate of 58% recommending stocks, earning a +9.1% average return per recommendation.

Separately on July 15, Matthew Ramsay of Canaccord Genuity reiterated a Buy rating on Intel with a $39 price target.

The analyst notes, “Despite soft PC sales and a lowered PC outlook for the year (as expected), Intel delivered a solid Q2/15 driven by strength in data center, IoT, and particularly NAND sales.” He continues, “We maintain our bullish view on improving Intel fundamentals highlighted by the company’s manufacturing advantages and strong secular momentum supporting 15%+ DCG, strong IoTG, and ramping NAND growth potential.”

Ramsay concludes, “Investors now have a more pragmatic view of the secular challenges of the PC business and these expectations are reflected in the stock.”

Matt Ramsay

When measured over a one-year horizon and no benchmark, Matt Ramsay has an overall success rate of 58% recommending stocks, earning a +7.2% average return per recommendation.

Out of 27 analysts polled by TipRanks, 16 analysts are bullish on Intel, 7 are neutral, and 4 are bearish. The average 12-month price target for Intel is $34.31, marking a 14.94% potential upside from where stock is currently trading.

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