SAN FRANCISCOTotal capital expenditure investment in NAND flash memory is expected to fall by 59 percent in 2009 after decreasing by almost 28 percent in 2008, according to an analysis by DRAMeXchange, a memory clearing house.
NAND bit growth in 2009 is projected to be 64 percent greater than 2008, when bit growth increased by 133 percent over 2007, DRAMeXchange (Taipei) said. If demand recovers in the second half of the year and NAND suppliers control their output growth, the prolonged oversupply situation may improve and NAND pricing will stabilize and gradually rise, the company projected.
In recent months, suppliers have announced plans to take NAND manufacturing capacity offline, particularly 200-mm fabs, DRAMeXchange noted.
Downstream NAND customers are lowering their inventory levels and demand comes mostly in the form of short-term rush orders, DRAMeXchange said. With some inventory purchase demand after the Chinese Lunar New Year and the pushing by some rush orders, some NAND flash contract prices are expected to stabilize or rebound in the short term, the firm said.
Joseph Unsworth, an analyst with Gartner Inc. (Stamford, Conn.), said Tuesday (Feb. 17) that NAND flash prices have been on the rise for about two months, with the majority of product tags up about 5 percent over the last week.
The overall average selling price for NAND dropped by 32 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008 alone, according to the DRAMeXchange.
Oversupply conditions are expected to persist through at least the first half of this year due to poor visibility and weak NAND demand, DRAMeXchange said.