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Gamble With AMD, or Win With Intel


It's the latter that's ripping the cover off the ball.

Asian stocks were a mixed bag overnight. The Hang Seng was off 0.29%, but the Nikkei was up 0.68%. However, European stocks were in positive territory early this morning. And here in the US, we're currently trading lower.

Here's what I'm seeing this morning:

Intel really hit this one out of the park. Check out its fourth-quarter release. It turned in $0.40, which was a dime better than expectations. It beat on the top line too, and its gross margin looked pretty strong.

Some other thoughts:

1. It was clearly a great quarter, and the shares deserve a nice bump up in today's session on the heels of the news -- and I think it will happen. To boot, it indicated in the release that for the first quarter, it's looking for "Revenue: $9.7 billion, plus or minus $400 million." Not too shabby as the estimate I'm seeing is for $9.35 billion.

2. Earlier this week, I said in Eight Reasons Intel Is Best in Class, that I see this as easily a $25 stock -- maybe $30. Nothing's changed on that front. These numbers and the outlook only excite me more.

3. With such a big blowout on the bottom line and such a great outlook, why would I want to dabble in Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)?

Advanced Micro Devices:
Justin Sharon points out in his article this fine morning that FBR Capital upped its rating and price target on the chip company.

I actually think AMD could have some legs on the heels of the Intel news. But again, why play in this sandbox when you can dabble in a company that's profitable (sorry, AMD bulls) and is ripping the cover off the ball? I see a possible trade here -- but that's about it.

The California-based company had some nice wind at its back in Thursday's session.
The reason for the bump up is that Morgan Stanley tossed it on its "best ideas" list.

My thoughts:

1. I'm not sure if it's the best idea, but it's a good one. As I pointed out in December 2009 in A Look at Oracle's Near Future, it's got plenty of flash in its pockets.

2. It's expected to show some enviable growth on the bottom line going forward.

3. Even on the heels of the pop it received, I remain bullish and think it deserves to be in the $28 or $30 range.

4. The estimates have been moving upward.

Barclays has slapped an Overweight rating on the Cayman-based company.

Estimates have been rising, and it trades at a low multiple of expectations. The storage-solution company is also coming off a better-than-expected quarter and I see upside from current levels. If it busts through its 12-month high, I think more folks will be paying attention.

Have a great day and an even better weekend!
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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