Prices of flat panels for TV, IT devices and monitor applications are expected to continue to fall in July as market conditions remain volatile, according to industry sources.
While the US-China trade war appeared to have begun easing, the newly emerging trade tensions caused by disputes over Japan’s export curbs on some key semiconductor materials to Korea could offset the peak seasonal effect in the third quarter, said the sources.
TV panel prices remained stable in most part of May, as some brand vendors pulled in orders in advance prior to Samsung Display’s planned closure of its 8.5G L8-1-1 fab scheduled in the second quarter of 2019.
TV brand vendors have built up their inventories, but Samsung Display now plans to delay the closure of the 8.5G line to the third quarter, pushing TV panel prices to reverse sharply downward in June, indicated the sources.
Despite efforts by some panel makers to adjust their production capacity in June and July, TV panel prices will continue to drift down this month, due in part to the failure of China’s TV brands to effectively boost sales during the 618 mid-year shopping festival, said the sources.
Quotes for 32-inch TV panels are expected to fall US$1 per unit in July after suffering a decline of US$4 a month earlier, according to Sigmaintell Consulting.
Prices for 39.5-inch models will decline US$2 and those for 43-inch models will drop US$2, narrowing from a drop of US$5 in the previous month. Price reductions for 49/50-inch models will narrow to US$1-2 compared to a range of US$6-7 seen a month earlier.
Furthermore, prices of 55-inch TV panels are expected to reach a historic low level of US$115 in July, and those for 75-inch models will drop to below US$400, Sigmaintell estimated.
With regard to IT panels, prices of 21.5-inch monitor panels are expected to stop falling in July as their current selling prices are close to production costs. Quotes for 23.8- and 27-inch monitor panels, however, will continue to fall in most part of the third quarter.
The only good news for the panel industry is that prices for small- to medium-size panels, mostly for handset applications, are likely to remain stable in the third quarter thanks to seasonal demand, said Sigmaintell.―Digitimes