Chip-equipment maker Kulicke & Soffa rewarded its investors late Monday when it announced a 2-for-1 stock split, its first in nearly five years.
Company officials said the split will take effect July 31 for all shareholders of record on July 17.
Kulicke & Soffa (Nasdaq: KLIC) shares closed off 2 5/8 to 60 ahead of the news.
It and other chip-equipment vendors, such as Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT), Novellus Systems (Nasdaq: NVLS), KLA Tencor (Nasdaq: KLAC) and Lam Research (Nasdaq: LRCX), have watched their respective stock prices soar in lockstep with increasing demand for high-speed telecommunications and PC chips.
In its latest quarter, Kulicke & Soffa topped Street estimates when it pocketed $22 million, or 80 cents a share, on sales of $222.2 million.
The stock is trading at a relatively inexpensive price-to-earnings ratio of 39.
First Call Corp. consensus expects it to rake in $1.06 a share in its third quarter and $3.70 a share in the fiscal year.
On June 13, the Willow Grove, Pa.-based company landed its second $29 million contract with Advanced Semiconductor Engineering to build bonders used in the production of microprocessors.
Its shares moved up to a 52-week high of 87 5/16 in March after wilting to a low of 19 1/8 in August.
All 12 analysts following the stock rate it either a "buy" or "strong buy."
Kulicke & Soffa last split its stock 2-for-1 in July 1995.