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Sales record ends chip industry's year

February 03, 2014 | Peter Clarke | 222906123
A December sales record ended the year with the hope that market strength in the Americas and European regions will continue in 2014.
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The global chip market broke above $300 billion in 2013 to record a value of $305.58 billion in 2013, an increase of 4.8 percent compared with 2012, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association, referencing data compiled by the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) organization.

The three-month average of sales in December was $26.65 billion, down 2.0 percent from the previous month but up 7.7 percent compared with December 2012.Fourth quarter global sales of $79.86 billion were 7.7 percent higher than the total in 4Q12. This was the strongest December ever recorded and was driven strength in the Americas and European regions.

Monthly data is given by the SIA as a three-month average, although the WSTS organization tracks actual monthly data. The SIA and other regional semiconductor industry bodies opt to use averaged data because it smoothes the actual data that typically show troughs at the beginnings of quarters and peaks at the ends of quarters.

Total sales for the year narrowly exceeded expectations from the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) organization's industry forecast. WSTS was forecasting 2013 world semiconductor market sales of $304 billion with a 4.1 percent increase to $317 billion in 2014 and a 3.4 percent increase in 2015 to take the market to $328 billion.

Three-month average chip sales in December 2013 by region, except for year-to-date highlighted in yellow which are actual sales figures. Source: SIA/WSTS.

"The global semiconductor industry exceeded $300 billion in sales for the first time ever in 2013, spurred by consistent, steady growth across nearly all regions and product categories, said Brian Toohey, CEO of the SIA, in a statement. "The industry finished the year on a strong note with its best December on record, indicating that recent momentum is likely to carry over into 2014."

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