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Chip Starts – Are you an Optimist or Pessimist?

Dare we take one more peek at the trend in potential chip starts for next year? If you’ve been following my trend reports, you know that this data highlights the chip trade-off investigations that are going on right now in major IDMs and IP companies throughout our industry. These investigations are the pre-cursors to actual chip starts, 6 to 9 months out before the actual starts might begin.

Chip Investigation Trends Thru Nov08

When last we looked – end of Oct08 – the trend was up for the total number of chip investigations but trending down (look at the moving average) for the short-term future. Indeed, the moving average trend proved to be correct, as shown by data for Nov08. The number of actual chip investigations fell by about 4.5% since Oct08. Good news for the pessimist.

On the other hand, the moving average is trending upward, which means that the number of chip investigations should increase for Dec08. So there is good news for the optimist, too.

Further, actual chip investigations for the last several months have been above the expected number of such investigations (see linear estimation line). That is an encouraging trend, but not for the short term. Remember: these trends are forward looking, 6 to 9 months out from today. Still, it suggests light at the end of a tunnel.

Happy Holidays, all!

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