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After the market took a break from its ferocious rally and dropped sharply on Monday and Tuesday, it was back to the races today, as the Nasdaq closed up 1.27%. However, much of the action is coming after hours as a host of big names in technology are releasing earnings.
Here's a quick recap of the companies making news after markets closed, and where their stocks are trading after hours.
Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM )
The communications specialist is riding high on a solid earnings beat, trading up nearly 10% in extended trading. Earnings came in at $0.80 per share, beating expectations by two pennies. However, what really is getting investors excited is guidance for 2012. The midpoint of revenue guidance sits at $18.5 billion; that'd represent a healthy 24% jump from the just completed 2011 fiscal year's guidance.
While Qualcomm's stock has been by no means cratering recently, it has also faced some pressures as investors fretted over slowing smartphone demand. In the United States, results from Verizon (NYSE: VZ ) and AT&T (NYSE: T ) pointed to a slowdown in smartphone adoption. Across the big pond in Asia, big-time smartphone player HTC warned that revenues would decline sequentially in the normally robust fourth quarter.
So what's propelling Qualcomm forward while other mobile plays are seeing near-term headwinds? Emerging markets is one key area. While it's been worried that emerging markets would reduce smartphone selling prices -- and thus the licensing revenue Qualcomm collects -- average selling prices (ASPs) are proving resilient. The volume of devices in these markets is quite strong as well; Qualcomm noted on its conference call that 1.5 billion 3G devices are expected to be added in emerging markets through 2015. In addition, Qualcomm has been extremely successful in signing licensing contracts in regions like China, where a good deal of smartphone growth will be centered in the coming years.
Second, Qualcomm's chip business is on fire. Its inclusion in Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL ) iPhone 4S offers powerful tailwinds, but the company also continues to see tremendous traction in both Windows Mobile and Android in its Snapdragon processor.
I've previously recommended buying shares of Qualcomm and purchased the stock in our real-money services. If you're looking for a great stock to rule the mobile revolution, Qualcomm's hard to go wrong with.
Fusion-IO (NYSE: FIO )
Fusion-IO puts analysts to shame tonight; the company reported $74.4 million in sales and earnings of an adjusted $0.15 per share. That's well ahead of expectations of $64.3 million and $0.03. The stock has been absolutely taking off lately, bouncing more than 100% off the lows seen a little more than a month ago.
Fusion-IO is an innovative leader of the next technology revolution, providing enterprise-ready solid states drives (SSDs) with ultra-high performance. While the stock looks pretty pricey at today's levels, its position in a lucrative and growing industry is solid. The only thing I'm kicking myself about is not buying shares when I recommended it as a top play in storage in late September, when it was trading at half the prices it's fetching in after-hours trading tonight.
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