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Dell cuts equipment prices to businesses

Decline in costs for parts credited

DALLAS -- Dell Inc. has cut prices as much as 22 percent on selected computer equipment for US corporate and institutional customers, saying it was passing along savings from lower component prices.

The Round Rock, Texas-based company said the lower prices are only for servers, workstations, desktops, and notebooks for corporate and institutional clients, not consumers.

Spokesman Tom Kehoe said the timing of the price cuts was coincidental and unrelated to the Christmas holiday.

The cuts come as China's biggest computer maker, Lenovo Group Ltd., is reportedly in acquisition talks with a ''major international technology company." It's a disclosure that comes amid reports it might buy IBM's personal computer business.

Dell has a long history of passing along savings to customers when part prices drop, said Tim Bajarin, an analyst with Creative Strategies. He said the most recent cuts weren't a slight at IBM, or rival Hewlett-Packard.

''You have to go back to Dell's history. Passing on corporate savings is really a priority as opposed to trying to skunk IBM at this point," Bajarin said.

Dell has about 13 percent of the global computer market and employs about 53,000. The company had $41 billion in revenue last year and posted record third quarter earnings of $846 million, or 33 cents a share last month.

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