Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

Global Chip Sales Down on Thailand Flooding

Chip sales were disrupted by the effects of the flooding in Thailand and by the euro zone crisis in November, the Semiconductor Industry Association, a chip industry trade group, reported today.

Global sales of semiconductors were $25.1 billion in November, representing a decrease of 2.4 percent from October. On a year-to-date basis, global chip sales were up by 0.8 percent versus the same time in 2010.

Last month, Intel slashed its sales outlook by $1 billion on concerns that effects of floods in Thailand would impact demand for PCs, and thus for its microprocessors. The flooding has caused what’s being described as the most significant supply chain disruption to the PC and server industry in a generation.

SIA President Brian Toohey described the disruption as a near-term problem. “Supply chain disruptions resulting from the floods in Thailand have impacted semiconductor sales in the near term, however OEMs” — PC and other electronics manufacturers — “are expected to recover production losses over the course of the next few months,” he said in a statement.

“November sales were additionally affected by the continuing European financial crisis which is having a broad impact on other economies and global demand,” he said. The impact from Europe is especially clear in the 11.5 percent drop in sales to that region, which you can see in the chart below, a screen-grab from the SIA’s press release.

(Image credit: iStockphoto | V777999)

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik