10 Semiconductor Stocks With A History Of Earnings Surprises

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Includes: AMD, ASYS, ATML, CEVA, GTATQ, MLNX, PLAB, SIMG, TER, UMC
by: Kapitall

Whenever a company releases earnings data that beat analyst expectations, the stock will often rise in value to price in the good news. If you believe that company characteristics can cause EPS surprises to persist across time, this list may be very interesting to you.

We ran a screen on the semiconductor industry of the tech sector for stocks with a history of surprising analysts over the past four quarterly earnings reports.

Interactive Chart: Press Play to compare changes in analyst ratings over the last two years for the top six stocks mentioned below. Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research.‬

We also created a price-weighted index of the stocks mentioned below and monitored the performance of the list relative to the S&P 500 index over the last month. To access a complete analysis of this list's recent performance, click here.

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Do you think these companies will surprise the market again? Use this list as a starting point for your own analysis.

List sorted by average earnings surprise.

1. Silicon Image, Inc. (NASDAQ:SIMG): Engages in the design, development and implementation of semiconductors and intellectual property (IP) solutions for the storage, distribution and presentation of high-definition content in home and mobile environments worldwide. Market cap of $401.85M. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.07 vs. estimate at 0.03 (surprise of 133.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.03 vs. estimate at 0.01 (surprise of 200%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.05 vs. estimate at 0.03 (surprise of 66.7%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.06 vs. estimate at 0.04 (surprise of 50%). (Average earnings surprise at 112.5%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 7.46% over the last week.

2. Atmel Corporation (NASDAQ:ATML): Designs, develops, manufactures and markets a range of semiconductor integrated circuit (IC) products. Market cap of $4.19B. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.47 vs. estimate at 0.16 (surprise of 193.7%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.16 vs. estimate at 0.15 (surprise of 6.7%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.19 vs. estimate at 0.18 (surprise of 5.6%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.25 vs. estimate at 0.2 (surprise of 25%). (Average earnings surprise at 57.75%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 9.03% over the last week. The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 11%.

3. Amtech Systems Inc. (NASDAQ:ASYS): Engages in the design, assembly, sale and installation of capital equipment and related consumables used in the manufacture of wafers, primarily for the solar and semiconductor industries. Market cap of $82.61M. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.52 vs. estimate at 0.37 (surprise of 40.5%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.77 vs. estimate at 0.51 (surprise of 51%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.74 vs. estimate at 0.7 (surprise of 5.7%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.5 vs. estimate at 0.29 (surprise of 72.4%). (Average earnings surprise at 42.4%). The stock has performed poorly over the last month, losing 17.67%.

4. Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NYSE:AMD): Operates as a semiconductor company in the United States, Japan, China and Europe. Market cap of $3.94B. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.14 vs. estimate at 0.11 (surprise of 27.3%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.08 vs. estimate at 0.05 (surprise of 60%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.09 vs. estimate at 0.08 (surprise of 12.5%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.15 vs. estimate at 0.1 (surprise of 50%). (Average earnings surprise at 37.45%). This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 2.15). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 13.23% over the last week.

5. Mellanox Technologies, Ltd. (NASDAQ:MLNX): Engages in the design, development, marketing and sale of interconnect products primarily in North America, Israel, Europe and Asia. Market cap of $1.42B. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.21 vs. estimate at 0.17 (surprise of 23.5%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.24 vs. estimate at 0.14 (surprise of 71.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.27 vs. estimate at 0.21 (surprise of 28.6%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.31 vs. estimate at 0.29 (surprise of 6.9%). (Average earnings surprise at 32.6%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 15.99% over the last week.

6. Teradyne Inc. (NYSE:TER): Provides automatic test equipment products and services worldwide. Market cap of $2.42B. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.37 vs. estimate at 0.25 (surprise of 48%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.39 vs. estimate at 0.37 (surprise of 5.4%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.5 vs. estimate at 0.41 (surprise of 22%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.34 vs. estimate at 0.23 (surprise of 47.8%). (Average earnings surprise at 30.8%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 12.67% over the last week.

7. United Microelectronics Corporation (NYSE:UMC): Operates as a semiconductor wafer foundry. Market cap of $5.86B. In Jun 2010: Reported EPS at 0.07 vs. estimate at 0.06 (surprise of 16.7%). In Sep 2010: Reported EPS at 0.11 vs. estimate at 0.08 (surprise of 37.5%). In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.09 vs. estimate at 0.08 (surprise of 12.5%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.03 vs. estimate at 0.02 (surprise of 50%). (Average earnings surprise at 29.18%). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 11.44% over the last week.

8. GT Advanced Technologies Inc. (GTAT): Provides polysilicon production technology and multicrystalline ingot growth systems and related photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing services for the solar industry worldwide. Market cap of $1.08B. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.46 vs. estimate at 0.38 (surprise of 21.1%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.41 vs. estimate at 0.34 (surprise of 20.6%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.41 vs. estimate at 0.31 (surprise of 32.3%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.29 vs. estimate at 0.25 (surprise of 16%). (Average earnings surprise at 22.5%).

9. Photronics Inc. (NASDAQ:PLAB): Engages in the manufacture and sale of photomasks primarily in the United States, Europe and Asia. Market cap of $350.01M. In Oct 2010: Reported EPS at 0.14 vs. estimate at 0.13 (surprise of 7.7%). In Jan 2011: Reported EPS at 0.2 vs. estimate at 0.18 (surprise of 11.1%). In April 2011: Reported EPS at 0.24 vs. estimate at 0.16 (surprise of 50%). In Jul 2011: Reported 0.23 vs. estimate at 0.19 (surprise of 21.1%). (Average earnings surprise at 22.47%). This is a risky stock that is significantly more volatile than the overall market (beta = 3.17). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 12.2% (equivalent to 9.06 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 18.18% over the last week.

10. CEVA Inc. (NASDAQ:CEVA): Engages in designing and licensing silicon intellectual property (SIP) for the handsets, portable multimedia and consumer electronics markets. Market cap of $663.31M. In Dec 2010: Reported EPS at 0.19 vs. estimate at 0.17 (surprise of 11.8%). In Mar 2011: Reported EPS at 0.23 vs. estimate at 0.2 (surprise of 15%). In Jun 2011: Reported EPS at 0.22 vs. estimate at 0.17 (surprise of 29.4%). In Sep 2011: Reported 0.26 vs. estimate at 0.21 (surprise of 23.8%). (Average earnings surprise at 20%). The stock is a short squeeze candidate, with a short float at 15.07% (equivalent to 15.09 days of average volume). The stock has had a couple of great days, gaining 6.18% over the last week.

*Earnings data sourced from Yahoo! Finance, all other data sourced from Finviz.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.