Wed, Nov 14, 2007 - Page 11 News List

Semiconductor sales likely to exceed forecasts

BLOOMBERG

Global semiconductor sales this year and next will probably increase more than previously forecast, bolstered by demand for personal computers and consumer electronics, the chip industry's largest association said.

Chip sales may increase 3.8 percent to US$257.2 billion this year, compared with the US$253.5 billion projected in May, WSTS Inc said today on its Web site. Industry revenue will rise 9.1 percent to US$280.6 billion next year, the association said, exceeding the US$279.2 billion predicted earlier.

The group's forecasts diverge from those at research firm iSuppli Corp and the Semiconductor Industry Association, which reduced their estimates this year. Falling prices of computer memory eroded chip profits at Samsung Electronics Co (三星電子) and Hynix Semiconductor Inc (海力士半導體) in the latest quarter, while Elpida Memory Inc posted its smallest profit in six quarters.

WSTS forecast that sales of computer processors will rise 4.3 percent this year, compared with an earlier projection for a 1.2 percent decline.

The group "foresees a continuously growing demand for electronic products such as PCs, digital consumer appliances and mobile communications, enhanced by the increase of semiconductor content per installed system," it said in a statement.

Intel Corp, the world's largest semiconductor maker, last month reported that third-quarter profit rose 43 percent on higher demand for personal computers and forecast sales that beat estimates.

WSTS, whose members account for about 90 percent of the industry, cut next year's forecast for global memory chip sales by 2.3 percent to US$62.6 billion.

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