What happened

Shares of Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO) rose 12.6% in September, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. The semiconductor giant started off with solid earnings results, followed by glowing analyst reports.

So what

Broadcom reported 13.5% year-over-year revenue growth in the third quarter, sending bottom-line earnings 22% higher. The revenue figure was just below Wall Street's expectations, but the earnings number came in 3% above the Street target.

Technician using tweezers to install a microchip on a circuit board.

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

As a leader in storage and network controllers, Broadcom is riding a strong wave of orders from the data center market. To stay atop that wave, and to stay competitive in a market full of drastic changes, the company is investing $3.2 billion a year in research and development.

This stock has gone through some wild swings in 2018, based on a mix of successful and failed acquisition attempts. After September's strong showing, Broadcom's shares have gained a total of 4% in six months and traded almost perfectly flat over the last 52 weeks.