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Texas Instruments' tepid revenue view drags down techs

Texas Instruments stock outlook

The semiconductor industry is notoriously cyclical, and Texas Instruments Inc.’s (NASDAQ: TXN) heavy-volume post-earnings gap down is an excellent example of that. 

The chipmaker’s earnings exceeded analysts’ estimates, but the stock fell hard as the company issued current-quarter revenue guidance below expectations, and warned of weakness to come.

Texas Instruments’ poor forecast had ripple effects throughout not only the technology stock world, but also in the broader market. 

While Nvidia Corp. (NASDAQ: NVDA) remains the S&P 500’s year-to-date price leader, it’s off its August 25 high of $502.66, closing at $417.79 on October 25. 

The iShares Semiconductor ETF (NYSEARCA: SOXX) is trading 3.97% lower in the past week, and fell 4.04% on October 25. Heavily-weighted index components Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ: AMD), Broadcom Inc. (NASDAQ: AVGO), Nvidia and Intel Corp. (NASDAQ: INTC) all fell in tandem with Texas Instruments, also a top stock within the chip index. 

Guided current-quarter revenue lower

Texas Instruments said it expects current-quarter revenue in a range between $3.93 billion and $4.27 billion, well below the analysts’ consensus of $4.5 billion.

The news got worse, as Texas Instruments said it was not anticipating a recovery in China, and foresaw weak demand in every end market besides automotive. The company cited the industrials sector as being especially fragile, as weakness broadened. 

MarketBeat’s Texas Instruments earnings data show both earnings and sales declining in the past four quarters. Within the semiconductor manufacturing industry, the stock has been underperforming other large-cap industry peers by a wide margin. 

Tech was among the poor performers for the day, with only defensive stocks from the utilities sector and consumer staples sector showing gains. That’s an indication that Wall Street is expecting more challenging economic conditions ahead. 

There are several reasons why chip stocks are renowned for their volatility and susceptibility to cyclical economic patterns. One major contributor is the industry's inherent sensitivity to global economic cycles. 

In periods of economic expansion, demand for electronics and devices increases, driving semiconductor sales. On the flip side, during economic downturns, consumer spending declines, impacting chip manufacturers.

Texas Instruments bellwether for chip industry performance

Texas Instruments, in particular, can be viewed as a bellwether because its chips form the foundation of products from all corners of the economy, including consumer electronics, industrials and automotive. 

The chip maker sells the basic building-block chips that go into products in nearly every sector of the economy from autos and industrials to consumer electronics.

Even before the weak revenue guidance, Texas Instruments stock was underperforming the semiconductor index. If you compare the Texas Instruments chart with the iShares Semiconductor ETF chart, you can see that divergence. 

The broader industry has been declining recently, for reasons including restrictions on AI chip exports to China, forecasts of an economic slowdown and a slump in smartphone sales

Texas Instruments stock closed on October 25 17.2% below its 200-day moving average. The continued downside momentum, accompanied by above-average trading volume in the past two weeks, shows that institutional investors are losing conviction in the stock at a fast pace. 

Stock lower in after-hours trade

Texas Instruments stock was  0.56% lower in after-hours trading on October 25. 

MarketBeat’s Texas Instruments stock forecast shows that analysts still see a 23.57% upside in the stock, but keep in mind: That forecast is looking out for the next 12 to 18 months, meaning there’s plenty of time for the stock to bottom out before reversing higher. 

After the quarterly earnings report, eight analysts lowered their price targets on the stock. 

Within the Technology Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSEARCA: XLK), all but three stocks were trading lower. Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) was up 3.07% after a better-than-expected earnings report. 

Other S&P tech gainers were networking specialist F5 Inc. (NASDAQ: FFIV) and fiber optic gear maker Amphenol Corp. (NYSE: APH), both of which also topped revenue and earnings views. 

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