Sector Snap: Stocks of several chip makers rebound

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) ? Investors are betting that things won’t get much worse for several slumping makers of semiconductors used in phones, computers and other electronic devices.

The hunch helped lift the shares of SanDisk Corp., Micron Technology Inc. and Texas Instruments Inc. amid Friday’s sharp drop in the stock market. Texas Instruments’ shares also were up for a few hours even though management dimmed its third-quarter outlook.

Most chip makers have been hard hit by a feeble economy that has undercut their sales and left them with an inventory glut.

SanDisk, which is based in Milpitas, Calif., got a lift from a Baird Research note predicting the company will gain market share as it gears up to make more chips for Apple Inc.’s iPhone. Analyst Tristian Gerra also thinks the supply of flash memory chips is become more aligned with customer demand for the rest of the year, a shift that should stabilize prices. SanDisk shares had climbed 36 cents, to $38.88 in Friday’s afternoon trading. The stock’s price has ranged from $32.24 to $53.61 during the past year.

Micron, which is based in Boise, Idaho, has lost nearly half its market value since April. That apparently has persuaded some investors to view the company as a possible bargain. Its shares gained 18 cents, nearly 3 percent, to $6.44. The stock has ranged from $5.18 and $11.95 during the past year.

Texas Instruments, based in Dallas, got a bounce even though management said it expects the company’s third-quarter revenue to be in a range of $3.23 billion to $3.37 billion, $170 million to $330 million below previous predictions. But Gerra said investors had already assumed Texas Instruments would warn of trouble ahead, so it wasn’t jarring news. The company’s shares rose 30 cents to $26.11. The stock price has ranged from $23.26 to $36.71 during the past year.