The chip market is so volatile that apparently a minor power cut in a plant is enough to shove the whole lot into melt-down.
This week Samsung lost power at one of its plants in Giheung, south of Seoul. The power was only off for an hour which was just long enough for them to find the candles at the back of the kitchen cupboard and get the matches lit.
But the power cut caused the price of NAND chips to rise sharply as online traders started to fear that there would be a shortage of chips.
Samsung didn’t help matters much by claiming that the one hour power cut cost the outfit $7.9 million.
Apparently the big plants don’t like it when the power goes off and it takes a while to get back to full speed. However if the chip market can’t handle one plant going off line for a couple of hours there must be some serious shortage of chips building up.
The DRAM industry has been suffering lately with shortages of workers and materials.
It seems that after the recession, the industry was caught on the hop with a sudden demand for products. Some OEMs have been stockpiling products in the belief there will be serious problems this year.
The manufacturers have been telling the world+dog that the problems are only temporary. However it will not be helped if the power keeps going off at their key plants.