Sat08022014

Business & Real Estate

The bulls are still hiding

U.S. stocks have slumped broadly and sharply since early May, but last week’s bounce back was crucial. It stops any bear-market influence, and numerous advisers believe the market is in a correction phase.

Of more importance, China’s central bank Thursday cut its benchmark one-year lending rate by 0.25 percent to forestall inflation and slow the economy.

Overall, Europe is still a concern for investors. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has yet to decide what to do, but he told Congress he is prepared to take action. Silicon Valley issues become vulnerable on interest rates.

Several Silicon Valley companies continue to attempt to raise profits through litigation. A U.S. judge ruled that companies could use fragments of code that link programs and operating systems without violating copyright laws. The decision disarmed Oracle Corp.’s ($27.12; ORCL) lawsuit, which claimed that Google Inc. ($574.33; GOOG) infringed on Java patents.

Hewlett-Packard Co. ($21.67; HPQ) seeks up to $4 billion from Oracle, alleging that Oracle breached an agreement when it stopped developing software that runs on HP servers.

Google accused Microsoft Corp. ($29.21; MSFT) and Nokia Corp. ($2.78; NOK) of collusion against smartphone rivals in a complaint filed with the European Commission.

Lam Research Corp. ($37.55; LRCX) was founded in 1980 and is headquartered in Fremont. It designs and manufactures semiconductor processing equipment used in the fabrication of integrated circuits. Lam completed its merger with Novellus Systems of San Jose June 4.

The president of Lam Research said he believes the merger will accelerate revenue by leveraging the two technologies.

Lam finished FY2011 with $3.2 billion in revenue, a 51.7 percent gain over the preceding year. With the merger, Lam becomes undervalued.

The stock hasn’t been too exciting since 2002, but analysts are recommending the stock as a buy. The low target price has been $35, with the median target price $50 and the high $61.

QuickLogic Corp. ($2.24: QUIK) is a Sunnyvale semiconductor company that develops solutions for tablets, smartbooks, smartphones and other mobile products.

Its 52-week range is between $1.84 and $4.64. The company announced June 1 the pricing of its public offering of 4.5 million newly issued shares sold in units. QuickLogic expects to receive gross proceeds of $11.25 million before expenses.

Historically, in May the stock price was in the $3 range, but after June 1, the price dropped to $2.44 and has dropped daily. Presently, no top analyst is willing to project any comment, but none has said sell.

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