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Applied Materials misses by a penny

Applied Materials missed the consensus analyst earnings estimate by a penny in the second quarter.

After market close Tuesday, the largest maker of chip manufacturing equipment reported fiscal second-quarter earnings of $269 million, or 32 cents, excluding special charges. First Call's survey of 27 analysts predicted a second-quarter profit of 33 cents per share, with individual forecasts ranging from 28 cents to 37 cents per share.

Shares of Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT) traded at $50.77 in after-hours activity on the Island ECN immediately following the release of quarterly results. Applied Materials rose 20 cents to $49.89 in Tuesday's regular trading ahead of the news.

Second-quarter revenue dropped 30 percent from the last quarter and 13 percent year-over-year to $1.91 billion, or slightly higher than the analyst consensus projection of $1.88 billion.

The company's second-quarter gross margin of 44.8 percent was down from 48.8 percent in the first quarter.

New orders fell to $1.35 billion, down 44 percent from the first quarter.

Applied Materials and the rest of the semiconductor capital equipment sector have been hit hard by the widely reported slowdown in demand for devices that use the chips. However, some analysts believe that Wall Street has already accounted for bad news.

"While we expect revenues in the (second) quarter to contract.slightly below management guidance, and while we also expect guidance to further revenue erosion in the third quarter, we believe these factors have already been discounted into the shares," CIBC Oppenheimer analyst Ali Irani wrote in a research note released Tuesday before the earnings report.

Including a one-time charge of $58 million for previously announced restructuring moves, Applied earned 27 cents per share in the second quarter.