- Associated Press - Monday, July 12, 2010

SAN JOSE, CALIF. (AP) - Novellus Systems Inc., which makes equipment for producing computer chips, said Monday it posted a profit in the second quarter as the economic recovery that has bolstered the technology sector in recent months helped the company come back from a loss last year.

Quarterly net income was $63.3 million, or 66 cents per share. In the year-ago quarter, Novellus reported a loss of $50 million, or 52 cents per share. Revenue more than doubled to $321.4 million from $119.2 million in the same period last year.

The results easily topped the average estimates of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who had forecast earnings of 60 cents per share and $312 million in revenue.

Novellus said bookings rose nearly 20 percent in the quarter and shipments increased over 17 percent.

“This current upturn in semiconductor demand is being fueled by growth in a wide spectrum of electronics products,” CEO Richard Hill said in a statement. “We anticipate that the ‘gentrification’ of the worldwide communications infrastructure along with increased public-sector IT (information technology) investment and growth in China consumerism will continue to support a multiyear recovery in the semiconductor equipment industry.”

Novellus shares rose 22 cents to close earlier at $26.71.