Intel posts better than expected third quarter results. Is the tech sector picking up?

August 28th, 2009 at 12:36 PM  2 Comments

Intel_logo_3Analysts and financiers have been ever so carefully watching quarterly reports from industry leaders for most of the year in an effort to gauge the economy and its effect on technology markets as a whole. The news has been a veritable see-saw of ups and downs, but for Intel at least, things appear to be on the rise, as their third quarter revenue and gross margin expectations have been raised a half a billion dollars from $8.5 billion to $9.0 billion, down from $10.2 billion reported for the third quarter in 2008.

While this news is positive, it doesn’t hold true across the board for the technology sector. Earlier this week Dell reported drops in quarterly sales and profits, but echoed the sentiments of competitor and world’s largest PC maker, Hewlett-Packard, that the technology markets seemed to be stabilizing.

With back-to-school sales and the upcoming holiday shopping season, Intel and the technology sector as a whole are hoping that the stabilizing markets will hold out and that changes in the economy as a whole won’t leave them with falling fourth quarter results, as they experienced in 2008, when Intel’s revenue dropped from $10.2 billion to $8.2 billion.

Of course the fourth quarter of 2008 didn’t have a major operating system release to throw into the mix. With the scheduled release of Microsoft’s Windows 7 operating system in October, companies like Intel are hoping to boost sales. Some expect that corporate buyers may be holding out on new system purchases until manufacturers start shipping Windows 7 systems, rather than ordering Windows Vista or Windows XP systems. However, if recent economic trends are considered, it’s anyone’s guess as to how the fourth quarter of 2009 will play out for the technology sector.