18 September 2018

US tech firms feel sales chill after NSA saga, WSJ says

Big American computer and software companies are reporting slumping sales to China, some blaming increased government hostility toward the United States, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. Computer network equipment maker Cisco Systems Inc. said orders from China fell 18 percent in the third quarter from the same period a year earlier. International Business Machines Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co. and Microsoft Corp. also reported declining sales to the mainland in their most recent fiscal quarters, the report said. Executives cited several reasons for the falls including a slowing Chinese economy, a pause related to the recent Communist Party Central Committee meeting and a stronger push for Chinese companies to use homegrown products. But Cisco executives suggested Chinese customers, particularly those with government ties, may be cutting purchases of US tech gear in response to US restrictions on Chinese companies and revelations about surveillance by the National Security Agency, the report said.

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