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Semiconductor sales to shrink in 2012 says IHS

Semiconductor sales to shrink in 2012 says IHS

Increasingly weak economic conditions are depressing consumer and business spending on electronics, says IHS iSuppli.

The result is that it now expects semiconductor sales in 2012 to decline by 2.3% to $303billion from $310bn in 2011. The predicted drop in revenues reflects the forecast made recently by World Semiconductor Trade Statistics.

"Five out of the six major application markets for semiconductors – including the key computer segment – are expected to contract in 2012, pulling down the overall performance of the chip market," said Dale Ford, IHS' senior director, electronics and semiconductor research. "Still, one of the few silver linings is that the fourth quarter is expected to bring a mild recovery in year over year growth, setting the stage for a market rebound in 2013."

In terms of regional sales, those in Europe, Middle East and Africa will drop by 9.3% – the greatest margin of all regions.

All market segments are expected to see a decline in revenues, with the exception of cmos image sensors, LEDs, asics and sensors.

Memory sales are forecast to decline by 10.7% and IHS says the 'typically hot' NAND flash market will see sales fall back. Discrete component revenues will fare as badly, it continues, with revenue falling by 10.6%. The worst affected sector is digital signal processors, where sales will drop by 30.9%.

Graham Pitcher

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