Intel reverses semiconductor recession

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CMOS* giant Intel turned in its third quarter results and reported it had a gross margin of 58 percent.

Its operating income amounted to $2.6 billion for the quarter and its net income that is to say profit, was $1.9 billion. Its revenues were $9.4 billion for the third quarter.

This, said CEO Paul Otellini, was its strongest second to third quarter growth in over 30 years. That's a way of being optimistic because things have been bad for every semiconductor company.

Intel said it has record sales of CPUs and chipsets. The mobility group's revenue was up by 19 percent, the digital enterprise group was up by 14 percent and the little Atom was up 15 percent.

A gross margin of 58 percent was far more than the company expected. Intel spent $2.75 billion in the quarter on R&D and M&A (mergers and acquisitions).

It made a net loss on equity investments of $47 million, far less than it expected.

Intel's chief financal officer said: "Intel delivered exceptional financial results in the third quarter. Better than expected shipments of microprocessors and chipset businesses led to revenue of $9.4 billion, up 17 percent sequentially."  Stacy Smith said: "The factories [fabs] executed particularly well with inventories down an additional $300 million this quarter." There were improvements in yields and spending was "in tight control". Year on year, revenues were down by eight percent. "Healthy back to school sales and inventory stocking in anticipation of a seasonally up fourth quarter led sales higher."

* CMOS = complementary metal oxide semiconductors.