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Merrill Downgrades Micron Tech to 'Neutral'


Merrill Lynch downgraded Micron Technology (MU) to neutral from buy.

Analyst Joseph Osha says the company posted a 52 cent per share loss, worse than the 23 cent loss per share consensus. He also notes the $685 million in revenue was below the $809 million consensus. Osha attributes his downgrade to a slower-than-expected shift to the double data rate memory business, the resulting decline in market share and balance sheet deterioration. He says the double date rate business made up only 40% of Micron's first quarter revenue mix -- less than anticipated. He also notes the company confirmed continued strength in double data rate orders, but conceded it couldn't raise production fast enough to meet demand. Osha sees a 27 cent loss per share for the second quarter, on $794 million in revenues.


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