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Photronics (PLAB) Q4 Earnings Miss Estimates, Revenues Drop

Photronics, Inc. PLAB reported fourth-quarter fiscal 2020 earnings of 10 cents per share, which fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate and the year-ago reported figure by 33.3%.

Revenues of $149.3 million also missed the consensus mark by 3.1% and declined 4% on a year-over-year basis due to lower demand across Integrated Circuit (IC) and Flat Panel Display (FPD) segments.

China revenues were down 2% year over year as FPD was down on Huawei-related disruptions.

Photronics, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Photronics, Inc. price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | Photronics, Inc. Quote

Segment Details

IC Revenues (70.9% of total revenues) amounted to $105.9 million, down 6% from the year-ago quarter’s figure due to seasonal softness and weak memory demand.

IC achieved record China revenues. Foundry, logic demand drove the increase as the region continued to be a healthy location for new design activity.

Moreover, the company’s business in China comprises a few large key customers and many smaller developing customers. They are split evenly between the IC and FPD segments, representing a diverse revenue stream.

FPD Revenues (29.1% of total revenues) decreased 1% year over year to $43.4 million, as mobile display demand was constrained by U.S. trade sanctions against Huawei.

Operating Details

Selling, general and administrative expenses increased 5.4% year over year to $12.8 million. Research and development expenses were $4.1 million, down 9.5% year over year.

Total operating profit for the quarter was $14.9 million compared with $21.4 million in the year-ago quarter.

Operating margin contracted 370 basis points (bps) year over year to 10%, driven by costs of ramping the facilities in China and increased compensation costs.

Balance Sheet & Cash Flow

As of Oct 31, 2020, the company had cash and cash equivalents of $278.6 million compared with $260.5 million as of Aug 2, 2020.

Net cash flow from operating activities was $143 million as of Oct 31, 2020 compared with $78.2 million as of Aug 2, 2020.

The company repurchased shares worth $17.5 million during the quarter.

Guidance

For the first quarter of fiscal 2021, the company expects revenues in the range of $145-$155 million.

Earnings are expected to be between 7 cents and 14 cents per share for fiscal first quarter.

Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

Currently, Photronics carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Flex Ltd. FLEX, Garmin Ltd. GRMN and KLA Corporation KLAC are some better-ranked stocks in the broader technology sector. All the three stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 (Strong Buy) Rank stocks here.

The long-term earnings growth rate for Flex, Garmin and KLA Corporation is currently pegged at 10.5%, 6.8% and 11.5%, respectively.

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