November 9, 2010 – The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) has bumped up its outlook for 2010 semiconductor sales to 32.8% growth to $300.5B, up from 28.4%/$290B in its midyear forecast back in June. In a statement, SIA president Brian Toohey pointed to record sales driven by "strong global demand across a broad range of end markets."
Growth projections remain largely unchanged for the two years 2011-2012, with a slightly lower expectation in 2011 (6.0% vs. 6.3%) and slightly better in 2012 (3.4% vs. 2.9%). The SIA pegs a 13.4% CAGR for the three-year period, citing a recovering economy and bolstered consumer confidence, according to Toohey.
|Global semiconductor sales in US $B. (Source: SIA)|
This new outlook puts the SIA in the neighborhood of other prognosticators. A month ago iSuppli trimmed its outlook for 2010 chip sales to 32% from >35% citing soft demand and some pockets of inventory buildup. In September Gartner revised its outlook upward to 31.5% from 27.1%, but decreased its 2011 outlook to just 4.6% (vs. 5.7%). And IC Insights has been predicting ~30% for months now.
But the hike in 2010 chip sales is also somewhat contradictory — the SIA’s own monthly and quarterly data suggest things have been trending down toward 28% growth and perhaps even lower. John Pitzer from Credit Suisse crunched the numbers in a research report: Following 6.1% growth in September semiconductor revenues, "seasonal growth through the remainder of 2010 would drive 2010 revenues 25.7%," he writes.