MANHASSET, N.Y. Intel Corp.’s mid fourth-quarter guidance was a slight disappointment to analysts who expected the semiconductor supplier to project higher sales.
With Intel projecting fourth quarter sales to fall between $10.4 to $10.6 billion, ThinkEquity analyst Eric Ross lowered Intel’s sales guidance from $10.7 billion to $10.6 billion, and full 2005 sales to $39.2 billion from $39.3 billion.
On a positive note, Ross expects Intel’s margins to be slightly above the 63 percent originally projected.
Ross reiterated other analyst’s concerns that chipset shortages are hampering Intel’s growth, and added that inventory buildup at customers is a larger factor than originally expected.
Next Inning Technology Research analyst Paul McWilliams added in a report that Intel faces stiff competition from AMD, which has made inroads into Intel in the retail PC market. He expects both AMD and Intel to benefit from long-term PC growth the next few years, particularly as the China and India markets grow.
McWilliams noted that Intel’s production capacity issues could force the company to focus more on chipsets, thus leaving the NOR Flash market open for competitors such as Spansion, about to be spun off from AMD.