The value of semiconductor companies' stocks is on the slide, although this is partly down to the annual lack of demand over the summer period.
According to a senior executive at IBM Electronics, although sales of PCs in the first half of 1996 were poor, much of this is seasonal and will get better later in the year.
He said: "The second quarter in Europe was slower than we expected. Folks in the UK were busy with their general election while in France and Germany they had financial problems. There are so many choices of PCs out there that people are confused. There is the Pentium, the Pentium Pro, the Pentium with MMX, the AMD K5, the Cyrix M2 and many other flavours."
That meant, he said, that consumers had bought less. He said: "It is hardly surprising that the consumer is confused, given that the amount of money they are likely to spend will impact the consumer's family."
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