Semiconductor analyst house Future Horizons, summarised what it describes as a disappointing year for the semiconductor industry in 2007 and gave its predictions for a more respectable 2008. The full report is available free of charge from firstname.lastname@example.org. The first 2007 half-year IC sales were down 6% in value on the second half of 2006. With recovery only starting at the beginning of Q3, overall growth for 2007 is expected to be 5-6%.
Head analyst at Future Horizons, Malcolm Penn summed up the year. “It was a disastrous start to 2007 but thankfully the market fell in line with normal seasonal patterns by the start of the third quarter.” Penn continued, “Unfortunately, it has been a case of too little too late, hence our overall growth expectation for the year now in the disappointing 5-6% range.”
2007 is now the third consecutive year of single digit growth following the last boom years of 2003 and 2004 when the industry grew an impressive 18.3 and 28% respectively. According to Future Horizons, the reason for this year’s low growth was declining ASPs, given unit growth for the year is expected to end up at a respectable 12%. Whilst this was lower that 2006′s 18.1% number, it was more sustainable and in line with the industry’s 10% long-term average, especially given the current above-average global GDP growth.
Commenting on this year’s figures, Penn said. “On the face of it, this represents quite a dramatic industry slowdown, but the silver lining is the fact that the underlying causes were structural market corrections and not a full-blown semiconductor recession. This distinction is very important, because the industry can bounce back quite fast from a correction, whereas recovery from a recession is a much slower process.”
Looking ahead to 2008, Future Horizons predicts that semiconductor market growth should recover to a respectable 12% level, based on a 10% unit growth and a modest 2% ASP recovery.
Penn summed up to say, “The economists are not yet forecasting a global economic recession, and until they do, we are confident that 2008 will be a decidedly rosier year for the semiconductor industry.”
About Future Horizons
Established in April 1989, Future Horizons provides market research and business support services for use in opportunity analysis, business planning and new market development. Its industry information seminars and Forums are widely considered to be the best of their kind. Emphasis is placed on the world-wide microelectronics and electronics industry and associated markets.