IC Insights’ November Update to The 2018 McClean Report has presented an in-depth analysis and detailed five-year forecast for the IC industry, which is expected to enter a period of cyclical ‘cooling’ after an extended period of very strong growth.
Figure 1 illustrates the worldwide quarterly year-over-year IC market increases from 1Q through 3Q and IC Insights’ forecast for 4Q of this year. As shown, the first half of 2018 started out with strong quarterly year-over-year growth for the IC market. However, year-over-year IC market growth dropped to 14% in 3Q. Moreover, with the softening of the memory market, IC Insights projects that year-over-year IC market growth in 4Q will be only six percent.
Third quarter sequential growth confirms the slowing year-over-year trend. In 2017, 3Q/2Q IC market growth was 11%. This year, 3Q/2Q growth slowed to a six percent increase (the same rate as the long term average). As mentioned, the softening memory market has started to become a ‘headwind’ on total IC market growth. It is interesting that in 2017, the 3Q/2Q memory market growth rate was a very strong 18%. In contrast, the 3Q/2Q memory market increase in 2018 was eight percent, less than half of last year’s rate.