Chip Sales: Bottoms Up?
No big surprises here. The souring economy and related uncertainty in consumer and enterprise technology markets continue to drag the chip sector into the mud. While world-wide sales of semiconductors in March rose 3.3 percent from February, they were down nearly 30 percent from last year, the Semiconductor Industry Association said in a report today.
Another ugly SIA metric in a parade of them, though optimists will say that slight uptick in March is a sign that the industry has finally found a bottom from which to scramble upward. “The modest sequential rebound in worldwide sales in March suggests that demand has stabilized somewhat, albeit at substantially lower levels than last year,” SIA President George Scalise said in the report. “While all major product sectors showed month-on-month growth, there continues to be limited visibility in end markets. There are some bright spots such as ‘smart phones’ and ‘netbook’ PCs, but there are no clear signs of early firming of demand in other major end markets such as automotive, corporate information technology, and consumer electronics.”
So, perhaps we’re not on our way to the depths plumbed back in 2001-2002. And perhaps we are. The SIA doesn’t quite seem to know.