How are Semiconductor Sales Shaping up for the First Half of 2015?

Thursday, Jul 30, 2015, 4:30pm

by Semiconductor Industry Association

Next Monday, SIA will release its June 2015 global sales report (GSR), which will include global semiconductor sales totals for the first half (H1) of 2015. As we approach the halfway point, how should we assess semiconductor sales thus far, and what questions should we consider ahead of next week’s GSR release?


The good news is global semiconductor sales through May 2015 are higher than through the same period last year, despite weakness in electronic product demand. Sales through May 2015 were 5.4 percent higher than through the first five months of 2014, a signal that the industry is still in the midst of a cyclical upturn. As SIA reported last month, May 2015 marked the 25th consecutive month of year-over-year sales growth for the industry.

That said, regarding market headwinds, there have been concerning signs thus far through 2015 that bear watching through the rest of the year. VLSI’s Andrea Lati provides a helpful overview of these concerns in his recent interview with his colleague Dan Hutcheson, which I recommend.

So what should one focus on regarding first half and Q2 sales results when June sales are announced on Monday? Most important will be comparing H1 and Q2 2015 sales to H1 and Q2 2014 sales. One would expect positive June monthly year-over-year growth, which would imply positive year-over-year quarterly growth. More instructive will be comparing the pace of year-over-year sales growth from January through May. Did the pace slow down, increase, or remain relatively steady through each successive month?

Another question to consider is how did Q2 2015 sales compare to Q1 2015 sales? Historically, industry Q2 quarter-over-quarter sales growth has been slightly positive, and WSTS has forecasted quarter-over-quarter sales to increase by 2.5 percent. How will actual Q2 sales growth compare to the WSTS forecast, and if actual Q2 growth is less than forecasted, what does this imply about overall growth for 2015?

Clearly, there are many questions to consider in the lead up to next Monday’s monthly sales release!