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Tech Stocks' Earnings Previews: INTC, YHOO, LLTC, LRCX

The Q1 earnings season will heat up this week for the technology sector, with nine companies,including seven S&P 500 members, slated to report quarterly results. Companies reporting today after the bell include Intel Corp. INTC, Yahoo! Inc. YHOO and Linear Technology LLTC. Lam Research Corporation LRCX will release its fiscal third-quarter 2016 results on Wednesday, Apr 20.

As of Friday, Apr 15, we have Q1 results from 35 S&P 500 members that combined account for 9.8% of the index’s total market capitalization. Total earnings for these index members are down -9.0% from the same period last year on +0.1% higher revenues, with 71.4% beating EPS estimates and 54.3% beating revenue estimates. The percentage of companies that are able to beat both EPS and revenue estimates is tracking 42.9% at this stage.

Just like the other sectors, technology too will be impacted by global growth concerns, a strengthening dollar and volatility. However, the buzz surrounding cloud computing, AR/ VR and AI technology keeps investors’ interest in the sector alive.

Let’s have a look at the four major companies that are about to release their results.

Intel has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) and an Earnings ESP of +4.08%, indicating a reasonable chance of beating estimates this quarter. Also, we see a good track of positive surprises in each of the last four quarters, averaging 9.61%. Moreover, the enterprise deployment of Windows 10 later this year, increasing share in data center and the fast-growing cloud computing segment through its new Xeon chips and SSDs along withnew innovations in the fast-growing Internet of Things (IoT) segment should help Intel keep its surprise streak alive.

However, the secular decline in the PC market andincreasing competition could be concerns. Then again, with data center and other segments largely offsetting the continued softness in computing, Intel should perform well again. Therefore, our quantitative model calls for an earnings beat this time.(Read more: Intel Stock 1Q Earnings Preview: Beat or Miss?)

Yahoo has a Zacks Rank #3 and Earnings ESP of 0.00%, which makes surprise prediction difficult.Considering that Yahoo has been performing miserablyoverthe last few quarters, expectations from itare not toohigh for this quarter either. Also, Yahoo projected revenues on a GAAP basis of $1.05–$1.09 billion and revenues on an ex-TAC basis of $820–$860 million, both of which reflect significantly lower average growth than in the last five years. These numbers clearly showthat Yahoo’s growth rates are coming to a screeching halt.

The only thing that could move Yahoo’sshares is some update on the sale plans that everyone is hankering for during this earnings call.(Read more: Yahoo Stock 1Q Earnings Preview: Prepping For A Sale)

Linear Technologyhas a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) and an Earnings ESP of 0.00%. Although the leading OEM of analog and mixed signal semiconductorsis likely to have benefited from Linear’sdiversified portfolio, competitive pricing and an expanded multi-product offering along with weakness in the PC and notebook markets could act as dampeners in its Q3 fiscal 2016 earnings report.

Moreover, the company anticipates to record revenue growth only in the range of 3% to 5% sequentially, reflecting weakness in the industrial market and an uncertain macroeconomic environment.(Read more: Linear Technology Q3 Earnings: What's in the Cards?)

Lam Research Corporation has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) and an Earnings ESP of -1.82%. Volatility and sluggish growth globally is likely to affect this wafer fabrication equipment and services provider. Also,inherently high fixed cost structure and product concentration are likely to add to its woes.

However, on a positive note,the acquisition of KLA-Tencor could bringsome relief. The deal should strengthen its performance, expediteinnovation and expand market relevance. (Read more: What's in Store for Lam Research in Q3 Earnings?)

Summing Up

We won’t be surprised if some of the companies deliver positive earnings surprises, as estimates have been coming down for many. But Zacks proprietary methodology surely helps in uncertainties, so investors can make the most of it.

Stay tuned! Check back later forour earnings coverage of these stocks.

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YAHOO! INC (YHOO): Free Stock Analysis Report
INTEL CORP (INTC): Free Stock Analysis Report
LINEAR TEC CORP (LLTC): Free Stock Analysis Report
LAM RESEARCH (LRCX): Free Stock Analysis Report
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