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What to Expect From Intel's Q3 Earnings Report

By Anders Bylund - Oct 24, 2019 at 8:11AM

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The chip industry giant reports earnings after Thursday's closing bell. This could be a tough one.

Semiconductor leviathan Intel (INTC 0.00%) will report its third-quarter results after the market closes on Thursday, Oct. 24. For those keeping score at home, that's tonight. It's high time to take a look at what to expect from Intel in this report, so let's get started.

Intel's Q3 by the numbers

Intel issued guidance for this quarter three months ago. Revenue is expected to fall roughly 7% year over year, landing near $18 billion. GAAP earnings were targeted at $1.16 per share, 16% below the year-ago period's result. Adjusted earnings, which back out items such as a one-time tax benefit and amortization of acquisition-based intangible assets, should stop at approximately $1.24 per share. Intel didn't prepare an adjusted bottom-line figure in the third quarter of 2018, so this number should be seen as a 10% year-over-year decrease in comparison to that report's GAAP result.

For what it's worth, your average Wall Street analyst's estimates run right in line with Intel's guidance figures.

Man in a suit balancing precariously on a wire strung high above a cityscape.

Image source: Getty Images.

Industry rumblings

No man is an island; no company stands alone in the market.

This earnings season kicked off with a weak report from fellow semiconductor titan Texas Instruments (TXN 0.42%), whose management warned that end markets look soft in every direction. The ongoing trade war between Washington and Beijing is shaking the technology industry to its very roots, and Intel could very well experience similar weaknesses across its own customer base.

It's true that the two companies serve fundamentally different target markets. TI's greatest pains sprung from a flagging automotive computing sector and various types of embedded processing systems. Intel makes its hay closer to the big-iron servers in every data center.

But they work in the same global economy and wrestle with similar sets of border-crossing tariff threats. If the trade tensions have the power to bring Texas Instruments to its knees, missing estimates across the board and setting up for an even weaker performance in the next quarter, I don't think that Intel will be entirely immune to comparable disappointments.

Be careful out there

Intel's management already built a lot of negative market conditions into its less-than-impressive guidance targets for this quarter -- but so did TI and that report still fell short of expectations. Earnings and revenues well below guidance and analyst targets is a real risk here.

As an Intel shareholder myself, I hope I'm wrong about this. Still, I would not advise you to back up the truck to Intel's buy window before tonight's report. This is a risky event.

Anders Bylund owns shares of Intel. The Motley Fool owns shares of Texas Instruments. The Motley Fool recommends Intel and recommends the following options: short January 2020 $50 calls on Intel. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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