National Instruments Shares Plunged: What You Need to Know

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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of measurement and automation equipment builder National Instruments (Nasdaq: NATI  ) had their instruments forcibly calibrated today, falling as much as 12.7% on high but not ridiculous trading volume.

So what: National Instruments' first-quarter results came in a wee bit short, missing earnings estimates by a penny and revenue targets by $1 million. More damaging is the cautious outlook on the second quarter as management continues to assess the fallout from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami, not having a firm handle on the situation yet.

Now what: I see more of a buy-in opportunity than a festering crisis here. After all, National sells a good amount of instruments to semiconductor builders and designers, and we've seen that industry burgeoning lately with plenty of momentum going forward. In fact, National took the time on this earnings call to brag about how one of its tools helped TriQuint Semiconductor (Nasdaq: TQNT  ) cut some testing procedures down from two weeks to 24 hours. Shouldn't a tool like that be in high demand during an industry boom?

Interested in more info on National Instruments? Add it to your watchlist.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. National Instruments is a Motley Fool Stock Advisorrecommendation. The Fool owns shares of TriQuint Semiconductor. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.

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