KLA-Tencor (KLAC) Stock Reaches 52-Week High of $96.91

Shares of KLA-Tencor Corporation KLAC hit a new 52-week high of $96.91 on Mar 24, eventually closing at $95.72. The stock returned 35.1% in the last one year and has added approximately 21.7% year to date.

Also, the company's shares outperformed the Zacks Semiconductor Equipment - Wafer Fabrication industry in the last six months. While the stock returned 37.07%, the industry gained just 28.57%. Average volume of shares traded in the last three months was roughly 1,148K.

Notably, the company witnessed approximately 15% jump in its share price over the past two months, following its encouraging second-quarter fiscal 2017 results.

Share Price Drivers

KLA is one of the leading suppliers of inspection and metrology products and services.

The company reported strong second-quarter results wherein both earnings and revenues exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Non-GAAP earnings of $1.52 per share were up a massive 46.2% from the year-ago quarter. Revenues of $876.9 million were up 16.8% sequentially and 23.5% from the year-ago quarter. The increase was due to strong customer acceptance for the company's new products.

Also, KLA provided strong guidance for the upcoming quarter. For the third quarter of fiscal 2017, KLA expects shipments of $850-$930 million, up 0.34% sequentially at the mid-point. Quarterly revenues are expected between $860 million and $920 million, reflecting an increase of 1.5% sequentially at the mid-point. The Zacks Consensus Estimate stands at 893.9 million. Non-GAAP EPS is expected in the range of $1.42-$1.62. The Zacks Consensus Estimate is pegged at $1.54.

Also, KLA has an impressive record of returning cash to shareholders through regular dividends payouts. In the second quarter, the company returned $84.5 million through cash dividends to shareholders.

Moreover, KLA-Tencor continues to focus on innovation and is expected to benefit from its new product-development strategy. KLA has introduced a number of new front-end defect inspection products that are expected to augment its existing portfolio.

Additionally, KLA delivered an average positive earnings surprise of nearly 14% over the trailing four quarters. The Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company's comprehensive product line, cost reduction initiatives, continued innovation and strong long-term growth potential, position it well.

KLA-Tencor Corporation Price and Consensus

KLA-Tencor Corporation Price and Consensus | KLA-Tencor Corporation Quote

Other Stocks to Consider

Some stocks worth considering in the broader technology sector include ON Semiconductor Corporation ON , Alibaba Group Holding Limited BABA and Advanced Energy Industries, Inc. AEIS , each sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

For the current year, estimates for ON Semiconductor went up 7.8% in the last 60 days, Alibaba estimates increased 22.8% and those for Advanced Energy increased 18.2%.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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