Here’s what Wall Street analysts had to say after Micron’s disappointing earnings report
Micron Technology reported surprisingly weak quarterly results, raising concern among Wall Street analysts. Shares of Micron declined 3% in Thursday premarket trading after the semiconductor company missed earnings and revenue expectations in its most recent quarter. Micron reported a loss of 4 cents per share on revenue of $4.09 billion. Analysts polled by Refinitiv were forecasting a loss of 1 cent per share on revenue of $4.11 billion. In addition, Micron said it would reduce its workforce by about 10% in 2023 , as well as suspend bonuses, to deal with “challenging industry conditions.” Other semiconductor firms have recently said they would lay off workers or impose a hiring freeze. On Wall Street, many analysts say the stock remains a buy, though they expect the semiconductor name will still face challenges ahead. Others pared back their expectations for the already-beleaguered semiconductor name has further to fall. Shares of Micron are down 45% in 2022. JPMorgan’s Harlan Sur reiterated an overweight rating on the stock, saying shares have “little downside” after their underperformance this year. His $65 price target implies the stock can jump more than 26%. “We believe the stock continues to move in a positive direction as we head into 2023 as the market starts to discount revenue/pricing recovery in the 2H in response to the aggressive supply cuts and an improved demand environment,” Sur wrote in a Thursday note. “We would be accumulating the stock on pull-backs.” Barclays’ analyst Tom O’Malley lowered his demand and spending outlook, saying a recovery in semiconductor manufacturers may take longer than expected and extend into 2024. Still, he maintains an overweight rating on the stock. “[The] company continues to play the role of a rational supplier, cutting wafer starts, opex, and now further reducing capex but it’s clear this cycle is deeper and more prolonged than any since the tech bubble,” O’Malley wrote in a Wednesday note. “[Despite] the weaker numbers our downside BV of $40 remains unchanged with the stock attractive in the high 40’s,” O’Malley added. Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank’s Sidney Ho lowered calendar year 2023 earnings per share estimates, saying that the near-term pains continue to worsen for Micron. The analyst reiterated a hold rating, as well as a $55 price target that implies 7% upside from Wednesday’s closing price. “With the stock currently trading at ~1.2x book value and our view that book value will likely decline 5-10% over the next few quarters, we believe risk-reward at the current level is balanced and we wait for a better entry point,” Ho wrote. To be sure, some analysts saw the mounting losses as a reason to exit the stock. Morgan Stanley’s Joseph Moore maintained an underweight rating on Micron. He lowered his price target to $46, down from $49, implying shares could fall another 10% from Wednesday’s closing price. “As previewed, losses in February will be higher than expectations, with $600mm in losses; it’s a mixed outlook, as bits are recovering slightly faster than we expected, but prices remain challenging,” Moore wrote in a Thursday note. “In our view the significant debate is less about the magnitude of near term losses – at least now that the stock has weathered the narrative challenge of losses – and more about the time frame for recovery. While bulls seem to forecast improvement in the next couple of quarters, we don’t see it that way, and neither does management who is calling for challenging economic conditions through CY23,” Moore added. —CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed to this report.