ASML Q4 Profit Rises; Backs H1 Sales View; To Hike Dividend

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(RTTNews.com) - Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML Holding NV ( ASML ) Wednesday reported higher profit for the fourth quarter, supported by a significant increase in sales. Further, the company backed its first-half 2014 sales expectation and added that it plans to increase the dividend by 15 percent.

Chief Executive Officer Peter Wennink said, ''The fourth quarter showed our operational capability to respond to strong demand. Combined with an increased contribution from services and options, this resulted in record quarterly sales.''

ASML said its quarterly business was supported by continuing momentum in the Logic segment with customers starting to add capacity at the 20 nanometer node, driven by the mobile applications market.

Net income on an IFRS basis for the quarter increased to 506.7 million euros ($686.7 million) from 320.8 million euros in the prior year.

On a U.S. GAAP basis, net profit jumped to 481.1 million euros from 297.7 million euros.

Total net sales climbed to 1.848 billion euros from 1.023 billion euros. Net system sales surged 88 percent to 1.441 billion euros, while Net service and field option sales jumped 59 percent to 407.1 million euros.

During the quarter, the company sold 56 litho systems, compared to 34 last year. Net bookings climbed to 1.449 billion euros from 667 million euros.

Looking ahead to the first quarter, ASML expects net sales of around 1.4 billion euros and a gross margin of around 42 percent.

ASML said the memory segment continues to pick up in light of tight mobile DRAM capacity. Additionally, NAND memory bit demand is on a steady growth path with a stable market outlook. Citing these, ASML reiterated its first-half 2014 sales expectation of around 3 billion euros, excluding EUV.

Further, ASML plans to increase the dividend by 15 percent to 0.61 euros per share from 0.53 euros per share last year.

The stock settled at 63.10 euros on Tuesday.

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Referenced Stocks: ASML

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