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Varian falls on 1Q warning

Semiconductor equipment maker Varian Semiconductor (Nasdaq: VSEA) cut its first quarter revenue numbers due to delivery delays and a slowing chip sector.

Share of the Gloucester, Mass.-based company lost over 11 percent, down 2.81 to 21.31, after the opening bell Wednesday.

The company now expects to report first quarter 2001 revenues in the range of $223 to $228 million. Consensus analyst estimates at First Call were for $229 million.

Varian officials did not comment on the effect the reduced revenue totals would have on earnings. First Call's consensus for the quarter put earnings at 97 cents a share.

According to CEO Richard A. Aurelio, the lowered numbers are the result of requests from certain customers to delay deliveries, in addition to the general slump in the semiconductor sector.

The company said it is revising its guidance for the balance of fiscal 2001 and that further details will be released along with final numbers for the first quarter, on Jan. 25.

Annual revenue growth was also lowered to 10 percent, matching the revised growth projection for the industry, Aurelio added. Recurring net income is expected to grow by 15 percent to 25 percent.