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Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) shares rose last week to surpass their previous 52-week high of $28.45, but analysts are not riding the wave and expect the company to report its first year-over-year decline in sales and profit in 10 quarters on Tuesday.
Intel stock was trading on above-average volume of 36.8 million on Thursday as its share price increased 2.3 percent. Shares were trading 3.4 percent above their 50-day moving average and 11 percent above their 200-day moving average. The stock is up 16 percent this year. However, analysts expect the chipmaker to report earnings of 50 cents a share, down 11 percent from the year-earlier quarter. Analysts are projecting sales of $12.84 billion, down 0.1 percent from last year.
Intel has been scrambling to catch up in the burgeoning growth market of smartphones and tablets. While it dominates the chip market for PCs and computer servers, the mobile segment has gone to rivals like ARM (NASDAQ:ARMH) and Samsung.
Meanwhile, the PC market has been declining in North America and has stopped growing in the rest of the world. However, Intel has been pegging hopes on its ultrabooks and also partnered with Motorola (NASDAQ:MMI) and Lenovo to improve security and energy efficiency of its processors. The company is also expected to launch its latest chip technology, Ivy Bridge, this quarter. The release of Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows 8 operating software may boost sales in the coming months.
The company is forecasting a 9 percent growth in revenue this year, but analysts disagree. “Intel has set a lofty bar for 2012 that could prove aggressive and could keep shares range-bound in the near term,” analyst Hans Mosesmann said.
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