It looks like Intel will soon cut prices on some of its lower end mainstream quad-core processors. The company is slated to release its fourth quarter financial numbers later this week and may announce an off-season cut spurred on by unsold inventory and fresh competition from AMD on the server front. The chip giant has not commented on the rumors but, according to the Barron's tech blog, the announcement will arrive on January 18 with cuts of 15 to 40 percent on quad-core processors, 13 percent on dual-core chips and between 15 to 40 percent on Xeon quad-core server processors.

Intel originally expected fourth-quarter sales to add up to around $10 to $11 billion, but the economic slowdown has compelled their customers to cut back on chip deliveries, leaving them with an overgrown stock and a Q4 revenue of around $8.2 billion instead. With the Phenom II “Dragon” processor platform garnering positive reviews, the release of the Core i7 desktop processors in November and the impending launch of Nehalem variants of the Xeon server chips, Intel may have no other choice but to cut prices if it wants to start clearing out excess inventory.