Combined revenues of Taiwan's major foundries: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), United Microelectronics (UMC) and Vanguard International Semiconductor (VIS) are forecast to reach US$7.24 billion in the first quarter of 2016, representing decreases of 2.7% sequentially and 14.3% on year, according to Digitimes Research.
The first quarter would mark the fifth consecutive quarter of sequential declines, said Digitimes Research.
Inventory adjustments at most of the foundries' clients are already coming to an end with some even engaged in inventory replenishment, but end-market demand remains weak and sales of high-end smartphones have been less optimistic, Digitimes Research indicated. Overall, the foundries have seen their clients being cautious about placing orders in the first quarter.
Utilization rates at TSMC, UMC and VIS will fall to 80.3% in the first quarter of 2016 from 83.5% in fourth-quarter 2015, Digitimes Research said. Combined production capacity at the foundries will expand to a record 7.715 million 8-inch equivalent wafers in the first quarter, but customers' conservative attitude will drag down utilization rates.
Digitimes Research forecast that combined revenues of TSMC, UMC and VIS will come to US$32.91 billion in 2016, up 3.2% from US$31.88 billion in 2015.
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