(Recasts; adds details)
Sept 12 (Reuters) - American Technology Research cut its rating on the semiconductor sector to "underweight" from "overweight," saying a shift in demand for low-priced products in handset and personal computers markets may pressure revenue and gross margins.
A slowdown in demand is creating less urgency to introduce new products, which will limit semiconductor content per device and weigh on average selling prices as legacy products are discounted to maintain share, the brokerage said.
The brokerage downgraded nine semiconductor companies, including Intel Corp (INTC.O) and Analog Devices Inc ADI.N.
However, it upgraded Micrel Inc MCRL.O to "buy" from "neutral." "We recommend that investors buy this small-cap semiconductor growth and restructuring story on the dip now," the brokerage said.
Following are the ratings and price target changes by the brokerage: COMPANY RATING PRICE TARGET
NEW OLD NEW OLD Intel Neutral Buy $20 $27.50 Analog Devices ADI.N Neutral Buy $31 $37 Linear Technology LLTC.O Neutral Buy $32 $41 Nvidia (NVDA.O) Neutral Buy $11 $26 Cypress Semiconductor CY.N Neutral Buy -- --* Micron Technology MU.N Neutral Buy $5.50 $9 Maxim Integrated MXIM.PK Neutral Buy $21 $27 Semtech (SMTC.O) Neutral Buy $14 $20 Sandisk SNDK.O Neutral Buy $18 $25 Micrel MCRL.O Buy Neutral $10 $10.50
*The brokerage said it set a post-spin price target of $9 on Cypress, while pre-spin price target remains $35. (Reporting by Purwa Naveen Raman in Bangalore; Editing by Deepak Kannan)