Buy Alert: Is Intel (INTC) Ready to Dominate the CPU Market Once Again?

The semiconductor powerhouse Intel Corporation (INTC), which annually unveils new innovative desktop CPUs, is causing a stir with its recent announcement of the 14th-generation Raptor Lake processors. Rumors are swirling about the imminent launch of the Intel Core i9-14900KS, touted as the fastest-ever desktop processor, set to debut in March.

Now, let’s assess the prospects of Intel’s rumored Core i9-14900KS processor in the competitive CPU market and the implications of this product launch for INTC investors.


Launched in October 2023, Raptor Lake CPUs embody a hybrid architecture employing performance and efficiency cores. INTC’s rumored Core i9-14900KS CPU boasts eight high-performance Raptor Cove cores, 16 energy-efficient Gracemont cores, and a 68MB cache, enhancing computational prowess and multitasking capabilities.

The forthcoming CPU showcases a higher default TDP of 150W compared to its predecessors. Also, it achieves a maximum turbo clock of 6.2 GHz, surpassing the 19400K and 19400KF models by 200 MHz. The enhancement is expected to bode well for performance-intensive tasks and demanding applications.

Nonetheless, a significant drawback looms over this final addition to the LGA 1700 socket range of CPUs: an unprecedented power draw. Leaks suggest the chip may consume up to 400W under heavy loads, necessitating robust cooling solutions and ample power supply provisions.

Acquiring sufficient Raptor Lake Refresh processors capable of operating at exceptionally high clocks should pose minimal challenges, given INTC’s substantial production capacity. However, the potential exorbitant power draw raises concerns regarding enthusiast adoption, necessitating formidable cooling solutions to mitigate heat dissipation concerns.

That being said, the Core i9-14900KS CPU, with its advanced specifications and outstanding performance, may initially boost INTC's stock due to enhanced anticipation but could face scrutiny due to concerns regarding power draw.


A recent leak has unveiled the anticipated price of INTC’s upcoming flagship gaming CPU, the Core i914900KS. Priced at a staggering €752 including VAT ($812.90) and €640 without ($691.83), it surpasses its predecessor, the 14900K, by €146 ($157.83). The revelation stems from a French online retailer, indicating a significant price hike.

Multiple European retailers are now listing INTC’s forthcoming Core i9 14900KS CPU. Leakers are showcasing both boxed and tray versions at €768 ($830.20) and €752 ($812.90) on the French platform PC21. While seemingly high, a $699 price tag seems feasible considering a direct USD to Euro conversion, aligning with earlier models’ pricing.

From an investor perspective, the pricing strategy could have both positive and negative implications. On the one hand, if customers are willing to pay the listed prices for the Core i914900KS processor, it could lead to increased revenue by capturing a large portion of the market demand and potentially higher stock prices.

Investors may view this as a sign of INTC’s ability to command premium pricing for its products, which could enhance shareholder value.

On the other hand, there’s a risk that the higher price could deter some consumers from purchasing this new Intel processor, mainly if competitive products offer similar specifications and performance at a lower cost. If sales fail to meet the company’s expectations or if there’s backlash from consumers over the pricing, it could negatively impact INTC’s financial performance and, consequently, its stock price.

Consumer Demand

Consumer demand for Core i9-14900KS CPU will likely remain robust, driven by limited supply expectations. Reports suggest it will be a limited edition, heightening its exclusivity and desirability among tech enthusiasts.

Despite potential bans on other INTC CPUs in Germany, the Core i9-14900KS is expected to be available globally. The imminent release of this Special Edition CPU is further supported by tests conducted on production units, indicating an impending official announcement.

The scarcity factor combined with the promising performance of the Core i9-14900KS is likely to create a strong demand among consumers, driving the company’s revenue streams and growth.

Competitive Landscape

INTC faces new challenges from emerging Asian competitors like Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSM) and Samsung Electronics Co., establishing their market position in the U.S. However, the Biden Administration’s proposed $10 billion subsidy could bolster INTC’s U.S. presence, supporting CEO Pat Gelsinger’s lobbying efforts.

Gelsinger is spearheading INTC’s push for government backing, which is crucial for its ambitious projects: a $20 billion Ohio facility, a $20 billion expansion in Arizona, and a $3.50 billion investment in New Mexico. The endeavors hinge on securing funding, which is indicative of INTC's strategic focus and future direction.

Moreover, NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) is venturing into custom processors for cloud and AI amid a surging demand for AI chips. INTC Foundry Services could emerge as a viable alternative for custom processors, as suggested by analysts at Bank of America.

INTC aims for significant growth in its foundry business, eyeing the second-largest global position by 2030, according to Stuart Pann, the SVP and GM of Intel Foundry Services.

Bottom Line

Although not the highest-valued semiconductor company on Wall Street, INTC leads in revenue, according to Gartner Inc. (IT). While yet to be confirmed, rumors strongly suggest the impending release of a Core i9 KS special edition. The company is strategically allowing the current Core i9-14900K time to flourish, potentially enhancing the special edition’s quality.

INTC reported strong performance in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2023. It posted earnings per share of $0.63, surpassing analysts’ estimate of $0.22. Additionally, the company’s revenue totaled $15.41 billion, compared to the consensus estimate of $15.17 billion for the quarter ending in December.

However, concerns linger regarding INTC’s outlook for the ongoing quarter. The company expects a fiscal 2024 first-quarter net loss of $0.25 per share on $12.20-13.20 billion in sales.

Moreover, INTC CEO Pat Gelsinger has asserted that the core businesses, including PC and server chips, are expected to perform at the lower end of the company’s seasonal range in the current quarter. Overall sales are anticipated to decline due to weaknesses in subsidiaries and revenue decreases from other divested businesses.

On top of it, INTC has been aggressively cutting costs by implementing workforce reductions and divesting smaller business segments. In the past year, the company announced plans to spin off its programmable chip unit following the transformation of its self-driving car subsidiary, Mobileye Global Inc. (MBLY), into an independent entity in 2022.

CFO David Zinsner disclosed that the company successfully reduced costs by $3 billion last year, and it divested or sold off five different business lines. While such initiatives may enhance long-term efficiency, short-term impacts on financial performance and stock valuation are uncertain.

Institutional adjustments to INTC holdings further underscore mixed market sentiment. While some institutions are increasing their positions, others are decreasing or exiting entirely, conveying a mixed sentiment among investors and volatility ahead.

Out of 2,846 institutional holders, 1,274 increased their positions. Moreover, 406 holders initiated new positions, acquiring 32,935,008 new shares. However, 1,306 institutional holders have decreased their positions, with 104 holders ultimately selling out their positions, disposing of 17,276,625 shares.

Despite its leading revenue status and potential strategic product releases, Intel’s outlook for the first quarter of 2024 falls short of analysts' expectations. Given these factors, it could be wise to wait for a better entry point in this stock.