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Dell yesterday saw shares drop 5.9 per cent over worries that the US direct selling giant may be shipping less kit than expected this quarter. Early trading had seen stocks dip by as much as seven per cent, making it one of the most active US shares. Kevin McCarthy, an analyst from Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette Securities said he expected Dell’s first quarter turnover to be $5.35 billion, revised from his earlier prediction of $5.5 billion, Bloomberg reports. Dell has seen increased competition from vendors trying to cash in on the direct PC market, according to IDC research. Compaq and Hewlett Packard have also turned in weaker than expected sales this year. Andy Brown, IDC research analyst for the EMEA PC market, told The Register: "I think this first quarter will be slower than forecast for most manufacturers. This is partly due to growing competition from the influx of Asian vendors, especially in the notebook market. The production of low cost, reasonably good quality products will start eating into the market share of the established players." Companies to watch out for from this region include Tatung, Hitachi, Sharp, Sony and Panasonic, Brown said. ®

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