Industry falls just short of $300bn as demand returns, but analysts remain cautious over 2011.
December was also strong at $25.2bn. Although this was 3.0 per cent down on November, the statistic was in line with regional trends. Most orders for the peak Christmas season had already been received. The SIA placed greater emphasis on the monthly number being 12.2 per cent higher than December 2009. Overall fourth quarter sales of $75.5bn were also up 12.2 per cent year-on-year.
“Semiconductor sales are a bright spot in our current economic picture, delivering a record high in the billions. The year- over-year growth is due in part to the increased use of semiconductor technology in a wider range of electronic devices that we have come to enjoy in modern life,” said Brian Toohey, the SIA’s president.
Toohey went on to address market concerns about a potential chip capacity crunch, given the sharp and sudden recovery in end-user demand. “Our member companies continue to ramp up their operations to meet the growing demand for semiconductor innovation,” he said.
The SIA remains cautious over 2011, accounting much of 2010’s number to pent-up growth. It still sees the recession having an impact and believes that growth for the year will be in single-digits. Its forecast is in line with recent end-user data, such as the global CEA/GfK consumer electronics forecast which foresees 10 per cent growth.
The increasing importance of Asia was also underlined in the SIA numbers. They say that Asia Pacific now represents 54 per cent of the total worldwide semiconductor market. The Americas only account for 18 per cent.