DRAMeXchange said that the DRAM contract price in August this year was the same as the previous month, and the average price of DDR4 8GB came to $25.5. Although the September contract price is still being negotiated, it is still likely to remain flat. Looking forward to 2020, due to the profit-oriented orientation of the three major DRAM manufacturers, the capital expenditure estimate will be reduced by at least 10% compared with this year. The annual growth of output next year is also the lowest in the past 10 years, only 12.5%, laying a certain foundation for the price rebound.
On the market side, with the approval of the Japanese government to export key semiconductor raw materials, the trade issue between Japan and South Korea began in July, but during the period, OEM customers were affected by uncertain factors and expected psychological factors, which caused the stocks of stocks to rise. The stock water level has gradually declined, moving towards normal water levels.
In addition, the third season coincides with the traditional peak season, and the United States will begin to impose tariffs on electronic products exported to some continents in early December, which also has an early shipment effect. Demand is stronger than expected, which allows DRAM manufacturers to negotiate prices. The attitude was firmer, and the overall third-quarter price reversed the original decline and turned flat.
Jibang further analyzed that the expansion plan of the three major DRAM original factories has become conservative. For example, Samsung’s Pyeongtaek II plant is nearing completion, but it will not enter the commercial transfer until the second quarter of 2020, and the newly added equipment is only Supporting the transition to the future 1Z nano-process, the overall amount of film will be roughly the same as this year.
SK Hynix's latest M16 plant will be completed in the second half of next year. The fastest increase in production capacity will be until 2021, and the old factory M10 will gradually be converted to OEM. It is estimated that the overall DRAM production volume will not increase or decrease next year.
The F-building plant added by Micron this year at the Hiroshima plant is also to support the transfer to the 1Z nano-process. The overall capacity of the Hiroshima plant has not increased. The new A3 plant being built by Micron Storage in Taiwan will also support the 1Znm process in the initial stage and increase production in the short term. The opportunity is not big, however, Jibang believes that the A3 plant base is not small, and there is still the possibility of new capacity in the future.
In terms of land factories, there are currently two DRAM production bases. The larger Hefei Changxin has been put into production. The initial products are mainly DDR4 8Gb. In the first half of next year, there will be LPDDR4 8Gb products, which will continue to go into mass production, but it is expected to arrive. In 2021, the production capacity will have the opportunity to reach 100,000 or more of the full load.
Although Fujian Jinhua was affected by the US ban, US equipment could not be maintained by engineers at the factory, but the internals still tried to adjust the parameters to their own optimization. It is expected that the film will be within 10,000 units next year.
Overall, Jibang estimates that in 2020, the mainland's DRAM investment volume will account for less than 3% of global investment, and independent production results will remain limited. In the future, the mainland memory industry still needs to overcome the challenges of yield, machine construction and IP, and the exact timing of the impact on the overall DRAM industry supply should continue to be observed.