Western Digital shipped 49.8 million units, a decrease of 4.6% from the previous quarter and 2.5% from a year ago. Although those numbers may look unfavorable, keep in mind that the entire market shrank by 4.8% from the previous quarter and 2.3% from a year ago, because of a lack of demand in January and part of February. So Western Digital's downturn was in line with the market's, yet the company was able to maintain its market share, probably because of a quick ramp-up from original design manufacturers in the production of Sandy Bridge-based systems after the recall had passed. This rapid response from the ODMs resulted in a higher demand for Western Digital's hard drives, more so than the company had expected.
Following the situation in Japan and the Sandy Bridge issues, Western Digital has a sunnier, if conservative, outlook for Q4. The company expects approximately the same performance as in previous years but also sees a likelihood that ODMs continue to ramp up as they struggle to fill consumer demand. That would probably push up hard-drive prices and improve Western Digital's bottom line. The stock saw a 1.45% jump after the earnings report, and we expect it to keep moving upward as companies such as JPMorgan Chase
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