Semiconductor Sales Up Slightly In 2002`

Chip sales edged up just 1.3% last year, and industry association says they're expected to pick up this year

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

February 3, 2003

1 Min Read

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- Global sales of chips edged up just 1.3% to $140.7 billion in 2002, but sales are expected to pick up this year, an industry association said Monday.

For the first time since 2000, the SIA anticipates that information-technology spending on hardware will increase this year. The trade group said it expects chip revenue to increase 19.8% in 2003 to $169.3 billion.

The slow rise in revenue continues a recovery that began in the fourth quarter of 2001, the Semiconductor Industry Association said.

Fourth-quarter revenue of $37.6 billion was up 1.9% from $36.9 billion in the third quarter, the trade group said. That represented the smallest quarter-to-quarter growth in 2002.

Semiconductor sales fell to $12.53 billion in December, down 2.3% from November's $12.83 billion but up 23.1% from the $10.18 billion of a year earlier.

The wireless sector recorded the most vigorous growth in 2002. Surging sales of cell phones meant sales of flash memory chips were up 13.2% and digital signal processors grew 6.8%.

PCs were the largest end market for semiconductors last year, accounting for 30% of total chip consumption. The SIA said it believes corporate buyers are beginning to return to the market.

The Asia-Pacific region, excluding Japan, was the world's fastest-growing market in 2002, with a 29% increase in chip sales for the year, the association said. That makes it the world's largest market, ahead of the Americas.

Semiconductor sales were down 13% in the Americas, 8% in Japan and 8% in Europe last year, as manufacturing of electronic equipment continues to move to factories in the Asia-Pacific region.

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