In 2012, the semiconductor industry was not able to regain control over excess inventory in the channel that was impacting silicon demand at the semi manufacturers. Deterioration of the global economy and weak consumer demand furter hindered silicon demand in the second half of the year.
With dramatically reduced manufacturing run rates in the fourth quarter of 2012 inventory sould be reduced to a point where supply and demand will approach equilibrium.
Unfortunately as demand deterioated in the second half of 2012 manufacturing inefficiencies have reduced the demand for mature wafer technologies such as 4- and 6-inch wafers. Looking out into 2013 the question facing silicon suppliers is when will demand return and how sustainable will these demands be...
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