That's why it's tough to see the company taking a bit of a beating over recently released fourth-quarter and full-year 2004 results. It's tougher still because it looks like it might deserve to be taken down a notch. Hurt by weaker-than-expected sales for Microsoft's
For the full year, sales were down 4.7% to $1.82 billion and earnings fell 20% to $0.43 per share, even though the firm again benefited from a much lower tax rate.
As opposed to the smooth uphill stock charts put up by some chip makers over the past year, it's been a roller coaster for NVIDIA. The stock more than doubled from February to July, only to get whacked hard back in August when rival ATI Technologies
Despite that bad news, NVIDIA put together a solid third quarter. Future products, including multi-function imaging chips for PDAs and cell phones, as well as motherboard products for AMD's
So, should investors put their chips on NVIDIA's chips? Management isn't providing fiscal 2005 guidance beyond the normally flattish beginning of the year, but analysts foresee earnings of $0.70 per share. That represents 63% earnings growth, and puts the stock at a forward P/E of around 30. As other Fools have pointed out, NVIDIA never really looks cheap, but given its broad product lines and history of battling back from adversity, this might be as cheap as it gets.
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Motley Fool contributor Seth Jayson owns plenty of AMD and NVIDIA products, but no shares of any companies mentioned here.