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 semiconductor designer Conexant Systems (Nasdaq: CNXT) soared as much as 18% in intraday trading on heavy trading volume.

So what: There could be a showdown a-brewin' for Conexant. Yesterday, the company received a buyout offer from Golden Gate Private Equity that valued the company's shares in a range of $2.35 to $2.45. That got shareholders' attention since last month Standard Microsystems (Nasdaq: SMSC) agreed to buy Conexant for roughly $2.25 per share. Conexant management said that the Golden Gate offer may be better than the SMSC offer. Shareholders are now likely on the edge of their seats, waiting to see if SMSC will push back with a higher bid.

Now what: As of this writing, Conexant shares were trading at $2.46, a penny above the upper end of Golden Gate's valuation range. That suggests that investors are pretty confident that that higher bid from SMSC will come in. Current Conexant shareholders probably don't have much to lose by sticking around to see how this plays out, but investors on the sidelines may want to be very careful speculating on a bidding war.

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Fool contributor Matt Koppenheffer does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned. You can check out what Matt is keeping an eye on by visiting his CAPS portfolio, or you can follow Matt on Twitter @KoppTheFool or on his RSS feed. The Fool's disclosure policy prefers dividends over a sharp stick in the eye.