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Chip Stock Anxieties Revived After Micron Sales View Falls Short

Jeran Wittenstein
Micron Technology Inc. Double-Data-Rate Synchronous Random-Access Memory (SDRAM) chips are arranged for a photograph in Tokyo, Japan. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/

Semiconductor stocks appear poised to extend September’s losing streak on Friday after a disappointing revenue forecast from Micron Technology Inc. is reviving fears about demand.

Micron, the largest U.S. memory chipmaker, sank 7 percent in extended trading after forecasting fiscal first-quarter sales of $7.9 billion to $8.3 billion. That fell short of the average analyst estimate of $8.45 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Competitor Western Digital Corp. declined 3 percent, while semiconductor equipment suppliers Applied Materials Inc. and Lam Research Corp. fell about 1.5 percent. Advanced Micro Devices Inc., the sector’s best performer this year, dropped 1 percent.

Semiconductor stocks, one of the best performing sectors in the last two years, have struggled to make new highs. While the S&P 500 Index closed at another record Thursday, the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index is down 4 percent since its March high and has lost ground this month.

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Contributing to investors’ angst is Micron’s comment that the trade war between the U.S. and China would hurt profitability in the first quarter.

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