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Worldwide sales of semiconductors totalled $20.6bn for the month of July, a jump of 2.2 per cent on the previous year, according to new figures.

The numbers were released by the Semiconductor Industry Association, which said the sector was on track to achieve its target of 1.8 per cent annual growth in 2007, despite severe competition in the early part of the year.

"Major demand drivers for semiconductors - personal computers, cellphones and other products - appear to be growing in line with analysts' projections," said SIA president George Scalise in a statement. "At this stage, it does not appear that the fallout from problems in the subprime-mortgage arena has had a significant impact on consumer purchases of electronic products, but this is a concern that bears watching," he added.

July's semiconductor figures represent a 3.2 per cent rise on June 2007, helped by demand for microprocessors, MOS logic devices and NAND flash memory products. Microprocessor unit sales increased nearly five per cent from June, while average selling prices rose by more than three per cent. The sales volume of NAND flash-memory products, found in things such as digital cameras, did not increase from June to July, but average selling prices climbed more than eight per cent.

Scalise also said that while average selling prices for dynamic random access memory (DRAM) chips - typically used in computers - continued to fall, the sequential drop narrowed to less than a two per cent decline in July from a month earlier.

The Americas was the worst-performing region. Although sales were up 5.5 per cent from June of this year, this still represented a drop of 6.2 per cent on July of last year. Europe saw a 2.4 per cent rise on the previous month, and a 3.4 per cent jump when compared with July 2006. Strong year-on-year growth was also reported in the Asia-Pacific region, where sales were up 4.8 per cent on July 2006.

© 2007 ENN

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