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DRAM sales to rise 35% this quarter

And capex up 8% this year

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DRAM sales will be 35 per cent higher in Q3 than Q2, market watcher Gartner Dataquest has forecast.

Memory sales traditionally rise in the third quarter - the 'back to school' season - but there are indications that the increase will be higher than usual, driven by growing demand for DDR SDRAM, largely due to the adoption of Intel's i875, i865 and, more recently, i848 chipsets.

Indeed, Hynix earlier this week said that DRAM demand was moving into a "recovery phase" thanks to Intel's chipset launches in May. Another sign of that demand are the rising prices seen in the DRAM market over the last few months. PC makers appear to be bundling more memory in a bid to attract customers.

If Gartner's forecast proves accurate, the quarter's DRAM sales should top $5.03 billion, up from Q2's $3.72 billion, itself a half a percentage point down on Q1's $3.74 billion.

Separately, Gartner said it expects capital expenditure to grow eight per cent this year as chip makers spend $29.9 billion on semiconductor fabrication plant this year. In 2002, they spent a total of $27.7 billion, down 38 per cent on 2001's figure of $44.68 billion. ®

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