The Chips Are Up, Redux

Published on November 30, 2009
by John Paczkowski

Worldwide sales of semiconductors in October rose 5.1 percent over September, racking up their eighth month of consecutive gains, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association. At $21.7 billion, October sales were down 3.5 percent year-over-year, by far the smallest decline of 2009.

“As semiconductor sales are increasingly driven by the performance of the overall global economy, our sales are reflecting the improved economic conditions in our world markets,” said SIA President George Scalise. “Sales increased sequentially in all geographic regions.”

Chip makers have kept inventories lean, and the holiday ramp-up in production could be extended by a few weeks, Scalise added.

Great news, coming as it does after the chip industry’s seemingly endless procession of bad. The semiconductor sector is typically among the first industries to recover ahead of a broader market turnaround. This latest report suggests we may be at the beginning of just that or at least at an inflection point where the uncertainty in consumer and enterprise technology markets that’s been such a drag on the industry begins to abate.

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