Early on Monday, chip industry website SemiAccurate reported that Intel has "pulled the plug" on its 10-nanometer (10nm) manufacturing process. "For several years now SemiAccurate has been saying the the 10nm process as proposed by Intel would never be financially viable," wrote SemiAccurate's Charlie Demerjian. "Now we are hearing from trusted moles that the process is indeed dead and that is a good thing for Intel."
However, around mid-day, Intel denied the report via Twitter.
AMD (AMD) - Get Report shares were up as much as 8.1% in Monday trading prior to Intel's denial, after having dropped over 11% on Friday. They're now up 4.1% to $24.65, while Intel is up 1.8% to $44.79. Earlier today, the company received an upgrade to Buy from Nomura that (among other things) expressed optimism about its planned 10nm production ramp.
Had Intel shuttered its 10nm efforts, it would have represented a fresh setback for a company that has seen its longtime manufacturing process lead evaporate thanks to delays with its 10nm process. Intel originally expected to start mass-producing 10nm CPUs in 2016, but now doesn't expect to do so until 2019.
During its July earnings call, Intel forecast that PCs containing 10nm CPUs would be available in volume during the 2019 holiday season. 10nm server CPUs aren't expected until 2020. The company recently launched its first 9th-generation Core CPUs; like Intel's 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th-gen Core CPUs, they rely on its older 14nm manufacturing process node.
With top chip contract manufacturer (foundry) Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM) - Get Report having begun volume production for a 7nm process that's seen as competitive with Intel's 10nm process, Intel's 10nm delays have created an opening for Intel rivals relying on TSMC, such as AMD, Qualcomm (QCOM) - Get Report and Xilinx (XLNX) - Get Report . AMD has begun sampling 7nm server CPUs and GPUs, and many expect the company to unveil its first 7nm PC chips in January at the CES trade show, where CEO Lisa Su is giving a keynote.
AMD's Q3 report arrives on Wednesday afternoon, and Intel's on Thursday afternoon.