MUNICH, Germany Strong demand for ASSPs, cellphone image sensors and microprocessors helped to lift sales in the European semiconductor market in August. The European Semiconductor Industry Association (ESIA) attributes the upturn to an improved inventory situation.
The figures for the European semiconductor market in August are a mixed bag; positive and negative aspects appear equally strong. While the month-over-month sales figures show a relatively weak 2.9 percent growth for the European market, in the year-over-year calculation the European market fared better at 5.3 percent growth. The three-month moving average was up 3.5 percent which was the smallest growth among the world's sales regions. In the Americas, the market added 7.2 percent, in Japan 3.7 percent and the Asia Pacific region once more was the top runner with a 7.3 percent higher market volume.
Nevertheless, ESIA has observed a "vigorous" growth in some market segments such as analog ASSP and CMOS image sensors for cellular handsets. Equally, the flash memory market experienced strong growth - simply for the fact that supply was tight and prices exploded.
The exchange rate between US Dollar and Euro once again affected the growth figures. Measured in Euro, semiconductor revenues in August were up only 2.6 percent over July; in comparison with August 2006, the market even shrunk 1,3 percent.
Anyhow, experts such as WSTS vice chairman Urs Rohrer see reason for optimism. "In July, we saw a trend reversal and in August, the uptrend continued. Indeed we saw the market to perform better than market researchers had predicted." Rohrer said he is optimistic that the uptrend will continue for the rest of the year.