KUALA LUMPUR (Feb 3): The global semiconductor industry sales increased 1.1% year-on-year in 2016 to US$338.9 billion (about RM1.5 trillion) in 2016, the industry's highest-ever annual sales, according to the US-based Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA).
In a statement on its website yesterday, the SIA said global sales for the month of December reached US$31 billion, equalling the previous month's total and bettering sales from December 2015 by 12.3%.
It said fourth quarter sales of US$93 billion were 12.3% higher year-on-year and 5.4% more than the third quarter of 2016.
All monthly sales numbers are compiled by the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS) organisation and represent a three-month moving average.
SIA president and CEO John Neuffer said following a slow start to the year, the global semiconductor market picked up steam mid-year and never looked back, reaching nearly US$340 billion in sales in 2016, the industry's highest-ever annual total.
"Market growth was driven by macroeconomic factors, industry trends, and the ever-increasing amount of semiconductor technology in devices the world depends on for working, communicating, manufacturing, treating illness, and countless other applications.
"We expect modest growth to continue in 2017 and beyond," he said.
The SIA said several semiconductor product segments stood out in 2016.
It said logic was the largest semiconductor category by sales with US$91.5 billion in 2016, or 27% of the total semiconductor market.
Memory (US$76.8 billion) and micro-ICs (US$60.6 billion) — a category that includes microprocessors — rounded out the top three segments in terms of total sales.
Sensors and actuators was the fastest growing segment, increasing 22.7% in 2016.
Other product segments that posted increased sales in 2016 include NAND flash memory, which reached US$32 billion in sales for an 11% annual increase, digital signal processors (US$2.9 billion/12.5% increase), diodes (US$2.5 billion/8.7% increase), small signal transistors (US$1.9 billion/7.3%), and analog (US$47.8 billion/5.8% increase).
The SIA said that regionally, annual sales increased 9.2% in China, leading all regional markets, and in Japan (3.8%). All other regional markets — Asia Pacific/All Other (-1.7%), Europe (-4.5%), and the Americas (-4.7%) — saw decreased sales compared to 2015.