Worldwide sales of semiconductors showed a sequential decline in April, dropping from $18.4 billion in March to $18.2 billion, the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) reported today. However, April sales were up 6.9 percent from the $17.0 billion reported in April of 2004.
“Two factors – a decline in DRAM prices and a lower mix of semiconductors for cell phones – contributed to a slight decline in worldwide semiconductor sales in April,” said SIA President George Scalise. “For much of the past year, cell phone manufacturers were working off inventories of chips used in low-end cell phones, which resulted in a richer mix of products shipped. Once those inventories were depleted and normal purchasing patterns resumed, overall ASPs for circuits for cell phones declined.”
April is traditionally one of the strongest months of the semiconductor industry during the year. A decline over March could be a first sign of stagnation or a downward trend of the industry. But Scalise believes that the industry is on track for a record year despite the disappointing April result. “Excess inventories have been eliminated and capacity utilization remains at reasonable levels. Energy prices appear to have stabilized, and US economic growth – an important bellwether for the semiconductor industry – continues to be strong. On the whole, worldwide semiconductor sales continue to run ahead of our November forecast,” he said. (THG)