It’s Cellphone Mania as Street Sees Signs of Recovery

Shares of companies in the mobile phone sector are staging a furious rally today, with many companies up by 10 percent or more, on some hints from the industry that demand might be bottoming. Here are a few factors contributing to the more bullish tone:

  • Texas Instruments (TXN) last night narrowed its Q1 guidance range. The post-earnings conference call was hardly bullish, but TXN VP for investor relations Ron Slaymaker did say that the company’s wireless business is doing a little better than expected, and that “the handset number came up a little bit relative to our initial expectation.”
  • According to a research note from Raymond James analyst Todd Koffman, executives from RF Micro Devices (RFMD) speaking at the Raymond James conference in Orlando yesterday said that handset demand has strengthened in the current quarter, with February stronger than January, and January stronger than December. The company indicated that it expects rapid improvement in capacity utilization, which was at just 25 percent in early March.

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