WORLDWIDE semiconductor sales slow to $10.9 billion

Tuesday, September 4th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

SAN JOSE, California (AP) _ Reflecting a slow economy and excess inventory, worldwide semiconductor sales fell to $10.9 billion in July, a 37.2 percent drop from a year ago, a trade group reported Tuesday.

Sales also were down 6.1 percent over June's level of $11.6 billion, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association.

``The reduced sales level is a consequence of the slow economic activity in the world's major economies combined with the excess inventories in the information technology market,'' said SIA president George Scalise.

Still, the inventory situation is expected to improve in the current quarter, with growth returning at the end of the year, Scalise said.

``We expect sales of personal computers, communications products and a variety of handheld devices ... will accelerate demand for a broad range of semiconductors,'' he said.

The decline in sales was seen around the world. The European market was 34 percent lower in July compared with a year earlier. The Americas plunged 51.2 percent, and Asian Pacific dropped 29.7 percent. In Japan, sales fell 28.6 percent.

The Semiconductor Industry Association has represented U.S. chip manufacturers since 1977. Its members account for more than 90 percent of U.S. chip production.