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Intel Earnings Fall, But Beat Expectations

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Intel has delivered its financial report for the final quarter of 2012, and the company’s results are mixed. On the one hand, earnings dropped dramatically. However, Wall Street analysts had been expecting the company to have a very poor quarter, so the report wasn’t as bad as expected.

“Intel shares are down in late trading after the tech giant’s fourth-quarter earnings topped Street views, as revenue fell in the company’s biggest business segment and the company’s margins tightened, and the chip maker struggles in a world that’s moving quickly from PCs to mobile computing,” reported The Wall Street Journal’s Paul Vigna. “Intel earned $2.5 billion, or 48 cents a share, on revenue of $13.5 billion, and while that topped Street views, it’s down from earnings of $3.4 billion, or 64 cents a share, on revenue of $13.9 billion a year ago. Its ‘core’ earnings were 51 cents a share, above Street consensus of 45 cents a share.”

All Things D’s Arik Hesseldahl noted, “For the quarter and year ahead, Intel said it expects sales of $12.7 billion, plus or minus a half-billion dollars. In Q1 2013, it expects a gross margin of 58 percent, plus or minus a few points. For the full year, it expects sales to grow in the low-single-digits percentage range, and gross margins around 60 percent. It expects to spend $13 billion, plus or minus a half billion, on capital expenditures during the year.”

ZDNet quoted Intel CEO Paul Otellini, who said, “The fourth quarter played out largely as expected as we continued to execute through a challenging environment. We made tremendous progress across the business in 2012 as we entered the market for smartphones and tablets, worked with our partners to reinvent the PC, and drove continued innovation and growth in the data center. As we enter 2013, our strong product pipeline has us well positioned to bring a new wave of Intel innovations across the spectrum of computing.”

“Intel has money, smart people and resolve, but it still doesn’t have a quick fix for the deterioration of its largest market — personal computers,” commented Quentin Hardy with The New York Times. “The world’s biggest maker of semiconductors, which grew by supplying chips to most of the world’s personal computer makers, is now facing an erosion of that market. According to Gartner, a market analysis firm, PC shipments worldwide declined 3.5 percent in 2012.”

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