The semiconductor industry has recently shown signs of stability.
As we head towards the end of Q12018, many lead times for popular product groups have remained static, providing buyers with confidence when planning long-term purchasing strategies.
Looking at individual product groups does raise some concerns, however. According to our information, the availability of discrete semiconductors has greatly diminished in the past month with most of the major manufacturers raising their lead times, with many lines now at a high of forty-weeks.
Elsewhere, Micron has placed its SDRAM lines on allocation, meaning that all of the Japanese manufacturer’s memory products are available on an allocation-only basis.
There are also some positive signs, especially in the opto market. For a full breakdown, read our complete market report below.
Lead times for analog parts have remained stable since the turn of the year, with none of the main manufacturers reporting an increase (or decrease). Despite this positive news, some franchise sources have recently reported that commodity prices are now at an elevated level.
As has been the case for many months now, overall market availability for discrete product lines are extremely tight. At the end of last year, we noted that some analysts were forecasting that costs would increase at some point in early 2018. Unfortunately, that appears to have happened, as many suppliers have, reportedly, raised their prices.
To compound matters, there have been widespread lead time increases. Infineon, Nexperia, Fairchild/ON Semiconductor, ST and Vishay have all shifted their lead time estimations upwards, with many lines now at thirty-eight weeks and above.
The biggest rise that we have seen concerns Infineon, with nearly every product category showing a marked lead time increase compared to a month ago. Many power MOSFETs, RF devices and rectifier lines have gone up by fourteen weeks and now stand at forty-weeks, something that will need to be accounted for if purchasing solely from franchised channels.
Another noteworthy update within this sector is that Nexperia’s RF devices are now available at a forty-week lead time. This is a sizeable increase, as back in January, distributors were quoting the same items out at sixteen-weeks.
There is one bit of good news, though: According to our information, Japanese manufacturer Toshiba has slashed its lead time for power MOSFETs from forty to twenty-five weeks, a substantial reduction of fifteen weeks.
Long-standing price and supply issues remain in the memory market. As those who have been following events for a number of months will be aware, the sector is volatile with many products on allocation due to consistently high demand.
Since our last update in January, we have received news that Micron has added its SDRAM products to allocation to go alongside its Flash (NOR and NAND) and DDR lines.
The only other change is that ST has increased lead times of its EEPROM devices to twenty-six weeks, a rise of five weeks.
The end of 2017 saw the opto sector beset by lead time problems, with plenty of fluctuation reported across distribution channels. However, the market has shown signs of stability in recent weeks.
DSPs & Microcontrollers
Lead times for DSPs and microcontrollers (MCUs) are static, with no changes reported since our January report. However, despite stabilising after a period of volatility, lead times for all lines remain high across all suppliers and manufacturers.
This problem has seen many franchise distributors ask for long-term visibility and purchasing plans from OEMs and external buyers to meet demand. This situation remains in place and as a result, we would advise people to explore using independent distributors to secure stock.
It has also been reported that NXP will implement a price increase towards the end of the fiscal year to counteract rising material and manufacturing costs. This is likely to be passed on through franchise channels, so, again, we would recommend that people explore other avenues of distribution.
As has been the case for previous months, the programmable logic sector has seen no lead time movement. Overall availability remains good.
The standard logic market remains relatively tight with lead times all between twenty and twenty-eight weeks and above. This, however, doesn’t represent a change since our last lead time report in January.
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- On February 22, 2018