New York's attorney-general launched an antitrust investigation into the world's largest chipmaker on Thursday, following similar action in Japan, South Korea, and Europe.
Attorney-general Andrew Cuomo said that subpoenas were being delivered to Intel Corp. seeking information on whether the company participated in monopolistic tactics against its rival chipmaker, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).
Intel's pricing strategies are coming into question, as well as whether it gave improper payment for exclusive deals with customers, or penalized computer makers who refused to cooperate with its stipulations.
Our investigation is focused on determining whether Intel has improperly used monopoly power to exclude competitors or stifle innovation, Cuomo said. We will also look at whether Intel abused its power to remove competitive threats or harm competition in violation of New York and federal antitrust laws.
Intel - whose processors are in more than four out of five x86 computers sold - denied any wrong doing.
We will work very hard to comply with the requests in the subpoena, it said. We believe our business practices are fair and that the microprocessor market is functioning normally as a competitive market should be, and we hope to convince the attorney-general's office of this.
In September, Intel was accused of anti-competitive behaviour by the South Korean Fair Trade Commission. In 2005, Intel settled with Japan's FTC by accepting a cease and desist ruling.
The state attorney general's office has been active in investigating alleged corporate malpractice under Mr Cuomo and his predecessor, Eliot Spitzer, including an inquiry into price-fixing in the memory chip industry.
AMD has also signed a deal that could see it build a major chip fabrication facility in New York.