Chip gear maker Ultra Clean Holdings cuts outlook, shares fall

Tue Aug 21, 2012 5:16pm EDT

Aug 21 (Reuters) - Semiconductor equipment maker Ultra Clean Holdings Inc lowered its revenue forecast for the third quarter, citing continued decline in orders as chip makers hold back on expansion plans.

Its shares fell 8 percent in extended trading to $6.20 after closing at $6.70 on the Nasdaq on Tuesday.

"We continue to see a decline in demand within the semiconductor capital equipment industry in the second half of 2012," Chief Executive Clarence Granger said in a statement.

"This decline has been greater than previously expected but we project it to flatten out during the fourth quarter of 2012."

Chip gear makers sell machinery used by semiconductor companies to make chips, but an uncertain spending climate and a weak PC market have pushed back orders.

Last weak, industry bellwether Applied Materials warned of a slowdown and projected a larger-than-expected drop in revenues for the current quarter.

Ultra Clean expects revenue of $96 million to $101 million in the third quarter, down from its prior forecast of $107 million to $112 million.

Analysts were looking for $109.9 million in third-quarter revenue, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company had forecast a profit of 10 cents to 14 cents per share in July, but on Tuesday it did not provide a revised range or reconfirm the prior outlook.