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Tech Industry

STOCKS TO WATCH: Applied Materials, JDS Uniphase, S1 and Sycamore

Expect the following technology stocks to be among Wednesday's most actively traded issues: Applied Materials, JDS Uniphase, S1 and Sycamore Networks.

  • Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT)

    The chip-equipment maker will be active Wednesday after it managed to surpass analysts' reduced estimates in its first quarter, but provided a grim outlook.

    In the quarter, Applied posted a profit of $558 million, or 66 cents a share, on sales of $2.73 billion.

    Analysts lowered their consensus estimate to 63 cents a share following its profit warning in late January. They originally pegged it for a profit of 74 cents a share.

    In a conference call with analysts, Applied ratcheted down projections for the current quarter, stating that revenue will come in at $1.9 billion to $2 billion. Earnings will be 32 cents to 37 cents per share.

    Those figures are well below analyst expectations for the current quarter, according to First Call. Analysts had called for Applied to post revenue of $2.4 billion and earnings of 49 cents per share.

    Orders for chipmaking equipment began to slow in mid-January, Applied executives said. The slowing U.S. economy caused chipmakers, especially in North America, Taiwan and Korean, to rethink their plans.

  • JDS Uniphase (Nasdaq: JDSU)

    JDS Uniphase will take its lumps Wednesday after it warned that its third-quarter earnings will fall short of analysts' estimates.

    The company now expects to earn 17 cents a share on sales of $1 billion, below the current Street view of 21 cents a share in the quarter.

    Company executives said it is experiencing "a lower level of near-term sales visibility" than it has in recent quarters.

    It now expects to earn 74 cents a share in the fiscal year on $3.9 billion in sales.

    Analysts were, on average, predicting sales of $3.8 billion and earnings per share of 82 cents for the year.

    The stock closed off $2.13 to $38.50 ahead of the warning.

  • S1 (Nasdaq: SONE)

    Keep an eye on S1 Wednesday after it posted a net loss of $813.4 million, or $14.45 a share, on sales of $60.1 million. It also slashed its sales estimates for the first quarter and fiscal 2001.

    S1, which develops software for financial services firms, warned last month that it would post a net loss of between $318 million and $371 million in the quarter on sales of between $60 million and $65 million.

    First Call Corp. consensus pegged S1 for a loss of $3.54 a share on sales of $62.9 million. However, it's unclear whether this estimate was adjusted following the Jan. 18 warning.

    Its shares closed off 94 cents to $6.94 ahead of the earnings report before falling to $6.13 in after-hours trading.

    Looking ahead, Chief Financial Officer Robert Stockwell told analysts to expect sales of between $60 million and $63 million in the first quarter, below the current First Call Corp. estimate of $68.6 million.

    Sales for the fiscal year are expected to fall between $275 million and $285 million, well below analysts' estimates of $311.6 million.

  • Sycamore Networks (Nasdaq: SCMR)

    The maker of optical networking equipment managed to top analysts' estimates in its second quarter and left its fiscal 2001 sales and earnings outlook unchanged.

    In the quarter, Sycamore earned $18.1 million, or 6 cents a share, on sales of $149.2 million.

    Analysts were forecasting a profit of 5 cents a share.

    Company executives told analysts during a conference call they would not change the firm's 2001 revenue growth target of 205 percent to 210 percent. The firm's pro-forma earnings per share forecast also would remain unchanged at 21 cents to 24 cents.

    Sycamore Chief Financial Officer Frances Jewels also said Sycamore's revenue growth target of 65 percent to 72 percent in 2002 would remain unchanged.

    The stocks closed off 50 cents to $22.63 before moving up to $24 in after-hours trading.