Worldwide semiconductor revenues should finish 2016 in the black, according to VLSIresearch, coming close to passing the $350 billion milestone for the first time ever. With the better part of three-quarters of the year’s data in, VLSI says it’s a safe that revenues of $349.4 billion are achievable, possibly more as conditions have been steadily improving since the darkest days of January, when VLSI noted a possible bottom. The supply-demand picture moved into shortage territory back in July and VLSI raised its industry status to “In Upturn.”
The key drivers of this positive outlook are above average growth in NAND Flash memory, Microcontrollers, DSP, and Power devices. Analog and Microprocessors have also grown faster than expected. Plus, price increases in DRAM memory chips, due to the recent shortage, is driving a more positive outlook going into the fourth quarter. At this writing, VLSI’s 4Q16 Nowcast* was for growth of 2% over 2015.
* Nowcast: Current quarter’s growth based on all the available data that’s in.
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