Supply chain
Highlights of the day: Memory pricing may stabilize in September
Rodney Chan, DIGITIMES, Taipei

The DRAM sector enjoyed robust growth in 2018, but oversupply coupled with weakening economy and demand has sent memory prices crashing this year. But there may be good news around the corner, with Adata's chairman expecting DRAM pricing to begin to stablize next month. Some others from the semiconductor supply chain are more consevative about their outlook for second-half 2019. Eight-inch foundry fabs expect their utilization rates to fall on weak demand for automotive and consumer ICs. Most agree that 2020 will see improvements thanks to 5G commercialization. PCB makers expect 5G smartphones to need bigger mainboards to accommodate more RF modules, which will boost their sales.

Memory prices to stabilize in 2H19, says Adata chairman: DRAM contract market prices are likely to stop falling and begin to stabilize in September, according to Simon Chen, chairman for memory module maker Adata Technology.

8-inch fab utilization rates may not rebound until 2020: Eight-inch fab utilization rates continue to fall on weak demand for automotive and consumer ICs and are unlikely to rebound until the first half of 2020, according to industry sources.

PCB makers to gain from enlarged mainboards for 5G smartphones: As mainboards for 5G smartphones will surely be enlarged significantly to accommodate many more RF (radio frequency) modules, Taiwan-based PCB makers including Zhen Ding Technology, Unimicron and Compeq Manufacturing as well CCL supplier Elite Material are expected to gain revenue growth momentum from the 5G smartphone sector, according to industry sources.

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