Intel's Stock Rallies As Upbeat Outlook Prompts Upgrades

Intel Corp.'s stock rallied 3.6% in active, premarket trade Wednesday, after the chip maker's upbeat sales outlook prompted upgrades from Wall Street analysts. Wedbush Securities' Betsy Van Hees raised her rating to outperform, as she believes the PC market has bottomed, with customer inventory replenishment helping Intel easily achieve its revised 2015 revenue outlook. Van Hees raised her stock price target to $37 from $34. RBC Capital Markets analyst Doug Freedman upgraded Intel to outperform from sector perform, and listed his price target to $40 from $38, citing an upbeat outlook for growth in the company's data center business and the belief that bearish PC sentiment is now fully priced into the stock. Intel reported late Tuesday first-quarter earnings that were in line with expectations, but provided a full-year revenue outlook that was above current projections. Meanwhile, Susquehanna Financial analyst Chris Caso reiterated his neutral rating, but said that while Intel's report wasn't great, "it also wasn't the disaster some had feared." The stock, a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, had lost 13% year to date through Tuesday, while Dow has gained 1.2%.

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