Is Silicon Wafer Pricing on Its Way Up Again?
The 2013 market for semiconductor silicon wafers totaled $7.5B, down 16% from 2012, according to a new report, “Silicon Wafers for Semiconductor Device Processing 2014 – Critical Materials Report.” The 2014 outlook is for 1% growth to $7.7B. The silicon wafer market is expected to grow to $8.7B by 2015, according to Techcet Research Group. The current outlook is positive for 2H14 as compared with 1Q14, with growth anticipated in all wafer diameters and all major market segments.
Silicon wafer purchases represent the highest operating expense for many device manufacturers and as a result are a constant target for price reduction. With the continued concentration of the semiconductor manufacturing base to a few large players, silicon producers have little choice but to succumb to the price pressure. As a result, ASP for wafers has declined steadily since 2011 with -14% and -16% in 2012 and 2013 respectively. Over the same period, the silicon market has experienced a steady increase in silicon area shipped at a CAGR of 3-6%. While overall silicon shipments have been relatively flat since the 2010 recovery, the change from quarter to quarter can exceed 10%. We anticipate this volatility to smooth as supply tightens with the growth expected in 2015.
For more information and purchasing, visit our Critical Materials Report on Silicon Wafers Market and Supply Chain.