3Q chip sales fall 1.7 percent globally

WASHINGTON (AP) ? Global semiconductor chip sales fell 1.7 percent in the third quarter, the Semiconductor Industry Association said Monday, as a slowdown in the industry accelerated.

Numerous chip makers have reported cutbacks in orders in the third quarter, blaming customers cautious about the direction of the global economy.

The 1.7 percent decline compares to an 8.6 percent year-over-year increase in the first quarter and a 0.5 percent decrease in the second quarter.

The largest decline was in Japan, which is still recovering from the earthquake and tsunami. Third-quarter sales there were down 9.3 percent from last year, the SIA said. In the Americas, sales were down 3.7 percent.

Average monthly sales in the third quarter were $25.76 billion, the trade group said.

September’s sales were better than average for the quarter, however.

“While global economic uncertainty creates limited visibility for the remainder of the year, recent positive indicators and developments in the U.S. and Europe are encouraging,” said Brian Toohey, president of the SIA.