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NAND Flash price will have sufficient momentum to rise would depend on upstream suppliers' further reduction decision, says DRAMeXchange

6 February 2009 Semiconductors

Taipei, February 3, 2009 -- Due to Hynix earlier reduction on its 8 inch fab and Toshiba’s reduction on its 12 inch fab, NAND Flash price rebounded at the end of 2008. 8Gb and 16 Gb MLC contract price rose 70% and 50%, respectively, and reached $1.82 and $2.46. In the short-term, whether price will have sufficient momentum to rise would depend on upstream suppliers’further reduction decision.

According to major consumer electronics makers’ 4Q08 earning release, most have suffered from shrinking sales shrinking.From the recently announced Q408 financial reports and product shipment numbers of the worldwide major consumer electronics vendors, almost everyone was influenced by the global financial crisis.

The Q408 shipment numbers of mobile phone maker Nokia and Sony Ericsson declined 4% and 5.8% respectively, Korean maker Samsung and LG maintained 2% and 11.7% growth, and Motorola hasn’t announced its Q4 shipment yet.But under the circumstances of the Apple iPhone shipment declined 37%, the consensus expects that Motorola Q4 shipment is also more on the declining side.

On the whole, the Q408 mobile phone shipment decreased 1.6% QoQ and only reached 305 million units. The rarely seen situation of hot season Q4 shipment being weaker than Q3 had never happened in the past few years. Since most mobile phone vendors are pessimistic about the 2009 market demand, DRAMeXchange forecast that the mobile phone shipment will decline 10% YoY in 2009 with the scale of 1.094 billion units.

Similar situation also took place in the DSC market, the Q408 sales condition of the leading brands, such as Canon and Sony, was way lower than the previous expectation. According to the financial report released by Canon, its Q408 shipment declined 9% YoY compared to Q407. Canon also forecasts that its 2009 annual DSC shipment will be 7% less than in 2008.

Due to the accounting method, Sony hasn’t declared its FY 2008 annual shipment yet (its fiscal year end is March 2009). But in the recently announced Q408 financial reports, Sony also again revised its FY 2008 annual shipment estimate from 24 million to 21.5 million units, declined 8.5% comparing to its actual FY 2007 shipment number.

On the whole, Q408 DSC declined 6% QoQ. Just like the mobile phone, this is the first time in the recent years that the hot season shipment is less than the previous quarter. DRAMeXchange expects that the 2009 annual DSC shipment will decrease 1.6% comparing to 2008, with the shipment scale of 129 million units.

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