Intel earnings signal rebound

Intel reports $2.4 billion in first-quarter profits, pointing to a possible end to the chip market’s downturn.

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Intel’s first-quarter earnings were up 44% from the same period last year, the best start to any year in Intel’s history.

Because Intel controls about 80% of the world’s chip market, the company’s profits are a good indication that the downturn is over for the microprocessor industry.

The company offered nothing but encouragement on that front today, suggesting that consumers have opened their wallets and that businesses are beginning to, as well. And after four years of steadily trimming jobs, Intel said it plans to add 1,000 employees this year to its global work force of 80,000.

Though based in California, Intel employs nearly 15,000 in Oregon — more than any other place the company operates. It has more workers in the state than any other business.

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