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Let the chipmakers fall where they may. 

Nvidia (NVDA) is set to report its fiscal year 2020 first quarter earnings results on May 16, and investors are likely bracing for some volatility. Intel (INTC) reported first-quarter earnings in late April and guided revenue down for the full calendar year of 2019 to $69 billion from $71.04 billion, as it said Chinese data center demand continues to be weak, hurting chip pricing. 

A team of tech hardware analysts at Cowen wrote in a note on Sunday evening that Intel's earnings report was a bad sign for Nvidia. 

"We expect the weaker datacenter outlook from Intel to affect results for the company as previously described inventory digestion and headwinds in China are more pronounced than initially believed and remain ongoing," the analysts wrote.

Nvidia shares were down 3.1% to $177.32 on Monday morning. They are down about 6% since April 25, the day when Intel reported its earnings. The iShares S&P semiconductor index (SOXX) is down 2.2% since that point. 

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Cowen's analysts are more optimistic longer term for Nvidia, however. 

"We anticipate, once these trends have cleared and Datacenter spending recovery begins, demand for NVIDIA's accelerators would ramp in 2H19 with both Gaming and Datacenter improving as long-term secular growth drivers for diverse parallel computing processing and related ecosystem drives results."

They also noted one near-term positive: "We also continue to forecast the company's excess channel inventory of Pascal mid-range GPUs to be cleared by the end of the April quarter," Cowen said. That excess inventory has been a tailwind for pricing. 

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)  has been confident about seeing a second-half recovery in chip demand and pricing, but not everyone agrees.  

"AMD's maintained guidance implying a sharp 2H19 recovery comes in stark contrast to Intel's outlook," Cowen said. Wells Fargo analysts recently said AMD could be taking market share from Intel's CPU chips sales, which Cowen also sees as likely. 

Nvidia shares are up 35% this year. 

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