NAND Flash


[News] NAND Flash Wafer Surges 25% in November – Continued Price Increases Depend on Manufacturers’ Expansion

According to TechNews’ report, in the midst of production cutbacks by Samsung, SK Hynix, and Micron, NAND Flash wafer prices are surging.

As the traditional peak season for end-user stockpiling comes to an end, memory module manufacturers wish to position themselves favorably during a dip in demand. However, the reduced supply resulting from production cutbacks paradoxically elevates the demand for NAND Flash, intensifying the momentum of price rebounds. Memory module manufacturers are left with no choice but to accept the price increases imposed by memory manufacturers.

Fueled by the expectation that memory manufacturers will continue to raise prices, memory module manufacturers continue aggressive purchasing, contributing to an upward price trend in December.

Major memory manufacturers Samsung, SK Hynix, and Micron had previously announced significant production reduction plans. Samsung initiated a decrease in NAND Flash production from the second quarter and further expanded the reduction to 50% of total capacity in September, focusing mainly on products with less than 128 layers. This move instilled confidence in price hikes among industry peers.

Due to the unexpectedly substantial reduction in production by major memory manufacturers, coupled with generally low inventory levels on the client side, NAND Flash prices continue to rise.

In the latter half of this year, the demand for Mobile DRAM and NAND Flash (eMMC, UFS) has not only been driven by the traditional peak season but also stimulated by the production expansion goals of other Chinese smartphone brands, including the Huawei Mate 60 series. This sudden influx of demand is contributing to the price hikes in fourth-quarter contracts.

The most significant price surge in this wave is undoubtedly in NAND Flash wafer prices. According to the latest research from TrendForce, the current industry situation indicates that module manufacturers’ inventories have rapidly depleted due to increased orders from customers. This has prompted module manufacturers to turn to memory manufacturers, requesting expanded supply.

However, with memory manufacturers persisting in their production reduction strategies, the imbalance between supply and demand has led to a robust rebound in NAND Flash wafer prices in the fourth quarter. According to TrendForce’s data, the month of November alone witnessed a price increase of over 25% for NAND Flash wafers.

Industry sources reveal that in the current scenario of limited supply and significantly increased demand, module manufacturers have no choice but to accept the forceful price hikes imposed by memory manufacturers. The industry, anticipating that memory manufacturers will continue to raise prices, has resulted in a situation where “Everyone just keeps scrambling for inventory.”

Based on the current market conditions, TrendForce believes that in December, with tight supply, NAND Flash prices will continue to rise. However, whether prices will continue to surge significantly in the first quarter next year depends on the production reduction strategies of NAND manufacturers and the state of demand.

It is reported that there are industry rumors suggesting that some memory manufacturers are considering increasing production capacity due to the strong downstream demand. If memory manufacturers decide to increase its capacity earlier, coupled with unclear improvements in demand, the extent of price increases may be noticeably limited.

(Photo credit: Samsung)

Please note that this article cites information from TechNews.


[News] Price Talks Every Week! Western Digital Notifies Customers of Weekly Price Adjustments

Memory prices continue to rise, with the world’s top five memory chip manufacturers, including Western Digital (WDC), notifying their distributors and consumer customers on December 5th that they will shorten the quoting period for their two major products – HDD and NAND Flash memory. Instead, they will adopt a pricing strategy of periodic adjustments to cope with the rapidly changing storage market.

Despite the traditional peak season of the tech industry nearing its end, memory industry insiders indicate that the off-season is not slack. WDC predicts a lively scenario of “weekly increases” in quotations, potentially prompting OEM customers to place orders earlier.

This trend is advantageous for raising both spot prices and contract prices for memory in the first quarter of the coming year.

The content of the letter sent by WDC to its channel customers is as follows:

“HDD – We will continue to review pricing on a weekly basis, with increases expected through the first half of next year.

Flash – We anticipate periodic price increases over the next few quarters, with the cumulative increase likely surpassing 55% of current levels.”

We have aligned our production capacity to the current demand environment, so our ability to respond to unplanned demand and orders is limited. Please ensure any changes to your orders are communicated as early as possible. Anticipate extended lead times for any unplanned demand.


According to industry sources in the memory sector, the letter from WDC primarily serves as a notice to OEM customers related to its two major product lines, HDD and NAND Flash. Due to major international memory manufacturers actively reducing production and controlling capacity to maintain prices, this has led to a significant rebound in NAND prices.

In recent times, both spot and contract prices have shown an upward trend, and HDD prices have been on the rise since the second half of this year.

Based on TrendForce’s data, WDC has benefited from the recovery in demand in the consumer electronics sector. The increase in NAND bit shipments in the third quarter has driven revenue upward, reaching USD 1.556 billion in the third quarter, showing a 13% quarterly increase.

The original plan for WDC was to merge with Japanese counterpart Kioxia, but after negotiations fell through in October, it was announced that WDC would be split into two publicly listed companies.

According to foreign reports, WDC has previously issued a statement announcing the spin-off of its flash memory business. Reportedly, the separated business will focus on memory for computers, devices, and portable hard drives, while the HDD business will concentrate on selling large-capacity memory to cloud data centers.

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(Photo credit: WDC)


Weekly Price Update: DRAM Held Steady and NAND Climbed

Compared to last week, there is no notable change in DRAM spot price. It is relatively stable in this week. On NAND Flash, there was a 20%+ growth in NAND Flash wafer contract prices last month, making buyers stock and sellers negotiate the price. It leads a surge in the NAND flash wafer spot price in this week.

DRAM Spot Market

The spot market has not changed noticeably from the previous week, and prices are starting to weaken as more used DDR4 chips are released into the market. Kingston has yet to adjust its module prices, so other module houses are hesitant to raise their prices as well. On the whole, the spot market remains fairly quiet in terms of trading activities, and the general price trend there is relatively flat. The average spot price of the mainstream chips (i.e., DDR4 1Gx8 2666MT/s) rose by 0.99% from US$1.712 last week to US$1.729 this week.

NAND Flash Spot Market

Overall retail sales of NAND Flash have yet to surpass performance of past years, though the growth of more than 20% in contract prices for Flash wafers during November that stimulated aggressive stocking activities among buyers had led to a more adamant approach in sellers’ negotiations, and had prompted 512Gb to surpass US$3 on a continual basis. 512Gb TLC wafer spots have risen by 5.35% this week, arriving at US$3.015.


[News] Memory Market Gradually Recovering, Samsung and SK Hynix Raise Q4 Financial Outlook

According to South Korean media Chosun Biz’s report, the prices of all memory products, encompassing servers, mobile devices, and PCs, are on the rise. This trend, combined with the thriving development of the AI market, is expected to result in even higher profitability for High-Bandwidth Memory (HBM) than initially anticipated.

Major memory manufacturers Samsung and SK Hynix are beginning to emerge from a business downturn, leading to upward revisions in their financial outlook for the fourth quarter of 2023.

The report notes that the adjustments in Q4 financial outlook by Samsung and SK Hynix indicate a rapid increase in demand for HBM due to the thriving AI market. Additionally, the recovery of the largest sales item, DRAM, is contributing to better operational performance for both companies in the fourth quarter.

Market experts reveal that Samsung’s projected operating profit for Q4 is expected to be KRW 3.487 trillion, showing slight growth compared to the estimate from a week ago. As for SK Hynix, the expected loss in Q4 is KRW 294.4 billion, reflecting a convergence from the market estimate of KRW 335.3 billion a week earlier, despite remaining in a deficit.

In addition, Micron, the American company considered one of the three major global DRAM manufacturers along with South Korean companies Samsung and SK Hynix, has also revised its financial forecast for the first quarter of the 2024 fiscal year.

The initial estimate in November of USD 4.4 billion has been adjusted to USD 4.7 billion , while the expected Earnings per Share has been raised from USD -1.07 to USD -1.

Regarding trends in the memory industry, TrendForce indicated in a recent report that a key turning point in the third quarter for the NAND Flash market was Samsung’s decision to actively reduce production.

Previously, buyers maintained a low inventory and slow procurement strategy due to concerns about low visibility of end demand and worries about a lackluster market peak season. With the leading supply-side companies significantly reducing production, buyers, anticipating a significant reduction in supply, have shifted to a more positive procurement attitude. By the end of the third quarter, contract pricing for NAND Flash had shifted toward stabilization and even price increases.

TrendForce predicts that NAND Flash products will experience both increased volume and prices in the fourth quarter. The average selling price for all products is estimated to increase by 13%, and the overall revenue growth for the NAND Flash industry in the quarter is expected to exceed 20%.

Contrarily, in the case of DRAM, prices have been on a downward trend since 2023, but they started to rise from October. TrendForce believes that the three major global DRAM manufacturers have begun intensive production cuts, and as market demand begins to recover, the pricing power of memory manufacturers is gradually increasing.

In terms of DRAM supply in the fourth quarter, memory manufacturers have a clear upward pricing attitude, as TrendForce projects a noticeable increase of approximately 13-18% in contract prices during this period. However, the recovery in demand is not as strong as in previous peak seasons.

Overall, while there is demand for stocking up, in the current scenario, the server sector remains passive in terms of procurement due to high inventory levels. The shipment growth in the DRAM industry for the fourth quarter is expected to be limited.

Please note that this article cites information from Chosun Biz

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(Photo credit: Samsung)


[News] Sino-US Memory Joint Venture, Longsys and Kingston Unite for High-End Embedded Solutions

On November 27, Kingston, the global leader in memory modules, and Longsys, acclaimed as key memory module maker in China, jointly announced the establishment of a new joint venture company in China. This strategic move aligns with the resurgence in the memory market, with Kingston taking the lead to step into the Chinese market, reported by UDN News.

As per the collaborative plans between Kingston and Longsys, the joint venture will be established in China, with Kingston holding a 51% stake and Longsys holding 49%. The focus is on expanding the Chinese market together. According to Longsys’ press release, the newly formed joint venture will operate independently, specializing in supplying embedded memory products to the Chinese market. Longsys will oversee product development and technical support, while Kingston will manage procurement and brand-related needs. The capital amount of the new company has not been disclosed by either Kingston or Longsys.

Founded in 1987 and headquartered in California, USA, Kingston is a globally renowned memory module product manufacturer. In 2022, it secured the top position in global memory module and solid-state drive module suppliers. Besides, it leads in the embedded storage market share and holds a dominant position as a key supplier to China’s Tier 1 OEM.

On the other hand, Longsys, established in 1999 and headquartered in Shenzhen, China, has emerged as a key player in the industry. In recent years, it acquired competitors such as Lexar in the United States and Smart Modular in Brazil. Longsys primarily focuses on NAND-related applications and is currently listed on the ChiNext board of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

In previous press release, TrendForce once mentioned that facing a volatile market in recent years, Chinese homegrown SSD channels are also actively advancing supply chain configurations. Aiming to step beyond China and into international waters, Chinese companies like Longsys is leading the charge by acquiring shares in Licheng Suzhou and Smart Modular to strengthen downstream module production capacity.

Regarding this joint venture, industry source anticipate that the partnership between Kingston and Longsys, with a focus on embedded storage products and NAND-related applications, will drive substantial demand for NAND chip control ICs.

Please note that this article cites information from UDN News

(Image: Longsys)

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