SAN FRANCISCO—Semiconductor shipments are likely to hit bottom late this quarter or early in the first quarter of 2012, according to a Wall Street analyst.
FBR Capital Markets analyst Craig Berger said in a report circulated Tuesday (Dec. 12) that his firm expects inventory reductions to wane and chip shipments to recover back toward consumption levels. The further that inventory levels fall into the first quarter of next year, the sharper the cyclical recovery should be for chip firms in the second half of 2012, setting up the potential for a "snapback" if inventories fall too low, Berger said.
Berger said FBR expects semiconductor industry revenue to grow around 5 percent next year, after a flattish 2011. "We expect some semiconductor shipment strength in smartphone, wireless infrastructure, industrial, and automotive end markets, with some ongoing risks that smartphone and tablet cannibalization impacts eat into traditional PC unit growth rates," Berger wrote.