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Shares of the chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE:AMD) have jumped by 5 percent on the day on word that it has recruited JPMorgan Chase to aid in assessing its options, which might include an outright sale. Sources later told Reuters that such a move is not the top priority, and a divestiture of a patent portfolio is also under discussion. This far in 2012 the firm’s shares have sunk by more than 60 percent, leaving it with a market cap of around $1.4 billion, with long-term debt and capital lease liabilities of some $2 billion. A partial list of potential suitors include Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), and several others such as Google and Microsoft.
“PCs could decline for many years to come,” says analyst Ben Reitzes at Barclay’s Capital, as he goes on to explain that the PC industry is just not paying attention to the manner in which a newer incarnation of mobile devices, particularly tablet computers, have taken over the role of the PC, by targeting users who now compute differently than they would have in the 1990s. The analyst reduced estimates for Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) and Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE:HPQ), remarking that the former will not see its PC business rescued by Windows 8, and that the latter’s PC segment is pressured by share losses along with the market slump in China, among other factors.
Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows chief Steve Sinofsky exited the company on Monday and now a number of persons at the top levels of the firm say that Bill Gates ultimately supported the current Chief Executive Steve Ballmer in instigating the departure. Ostensibly, the move was to promote better cooperation among the various divisions of the company and to get more top players involved in the planning and development of the next version of Windows.