Are Applied Materials’ Top Investors Buying After the New Product Announcement?

For the year-to-date, Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) shares are up 0.37 percent. Last Wednesday, the company announced its new Applied Varian VIIStaTrident system–the semiconductor industry’s most advanced single-wafer, high-current ion implant system according to its press release. It will engineer the electrical characteristics of the chip by embedding “dopant” atoms and is the only ion implanter that has been proven to gain the yields for manufacturing high-performance, power-efficient logic chips at the 20nm node.

Bob Halliday, VP and GM of Applied’s Varian business unit said of the new system, “A typical advanced logic chip requires as many as 60 implant steps, including co-implant and precision materials modification applications, many of which are critical to device performance. The precision of our VIISta Trident technology is vital to helping our customers achieve profitable yields on their leading-edge designs.”

With the new advanced system, will Applied Materials’ largest shareholders increase their holdings? 685 institutional firms indicated owning shares of Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) in Q1 2012. These firms reported owning a total of 1.001 billion shares on 03/31/2012 . The shares closed at $12.45 on 03/31/2012.

Here are the ten largest positions in Applied Materials Inc. at the end of March 31st, 2012.

Harris Associates LP held 70,661,766 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $879,738,973. This brought the portfolio total to 2.11%.

State Street Corp held 56,425,251 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $702,494,364. This brought the portfolio total to 0.11%.

Vanguard Group Inc held 53,787,768 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $669,657,701. This brought the portfolio total to 0.09%.

Alliancebernstein L.P. held 49,148,308 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $611,896,425. This brought the portfolio total to 0.62%.

Price T Rowe Associates Inc /MD/ held 41,587,356 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $517,762,574. This brought the portfolio total to 0.16%.

Blackrock Institutional Trust Company N.A. held 32,853,023 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $409,020,130. This brought the portfolio total to 0.09%.

Institutional Capital LLC held 31,593,644 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $393,340,862. This brought the portfolio total to 2.2%.

Bank of New York Mellon Corp held 31,569,740 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $393,043,257. This brought the portfolio total to 0.15%.

Invesco Ltd. held 30,859,216 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $384,197,233. This brought the portfolio total to 0.19%.

Relational Investors LLC held 22,421,693 shares on 03/31/2012 worth $279,150,074. This brought the portfolio total to 4.7%.

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