UPDATE 1-Intel cuts first-quarter revenue forecast by nearly $1 bln

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March 12 (Reuters) – Intel Corp slashed its revenue
forecast for the first quarter by nearly $1 billion, citing
lower-than-expected demand for business PCs and lower inventory
levels across the PC supply chain.

The chipmaker’s shares fell more than 5 percent in premarket

Intel said it expects first-quarter revenue of $12.8
billion, plus or minus $300 million. It had earlier forecast
$13.7 billion, plus or minus $500 million.

Analysts on average were expecting revenue of $13.70
billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Intel said it cut its forecast as small and medium business
owners did not upgrade their Windows XP operating systems as
often as Intel had expected. The company also cited
« challenging » macroeconomic and currency conditions,
particularly in Europe.

Intel said the mid-point of its gross margin range will
remain at 60 percent, plus or minus a couple of percentage
points, as lower PC unit volume is offset by higher platform
average selling prices.

Global PC shipments fell 2.4 percent in the fourth quarter
of 2014, according to research firm IDC.

(Reporting by Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru; Editing by Don

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