Semiconductor capital spend rises – but not by much

Silicon wafer - Wikimedia Commons -Spending on capital investment in the semiconductor industry is set to rise by 2.5 percent this year, well down on the numbers predicted.

Gartner said it had projected a growth of 4.1 percent for the year, but weakness in both the euro and the yen have skewed the picture. Total capital spending will amount to $66.1 billion for 2015.

Bob Johnson, a research vice president at the semiconductor firm, said: “With over half of all equipment being produced by either Japanese or European suppliers, the weakness in their currencies has been the primary factor in our reducing our overall outlook for 2015.”

He said that there will be pause in the equipment market growth next year, because DRAM will go through its normal cyclical downturn.

Foundries will outspend the logic integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) this year, with spending set to increase by 17.2 percent. But saturation of the smartphone market will subdue the necessity to create fresh capacity.

Capital spending in memory will only be 3.2 percent for the year – Gartner had predicted that that it would rise by 10.2 percent. But major manufacturers have revised their spending plans.

Silicon wafer spend will only increase by 0.1 percent during the year – that’s due to a slowdown on fab construction.