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Global IC Market Forecast Lowered From 3% to -4%

Daniel Nenni

Staff member
Coronavirus pandemic further reduces worldwide GDP and IC market outlooks.

When 2020 started, global economic conditions pointed to single-digit percentage sales growth in the IC market after it fell by 15% in 2019, based on worldwide market data compiled by IC Insights for the 2020 edition of The McClean Report—A Complete Analysis and Forecast of the Integrated Circuit Industry (MR20). However, the world abruptly changed in 1Q20 with the rapid outbreak of the Covid-19 virus, which shut down nearly all countries and paralyzed global markets beginning in March 2020.

Figure 1 depicts the changes made to IC Insights’ 2020 total IC market forecasts as compared to the original MR20 forecast presented in January of this year.

COVID Semiconductors 2020.png

Figure 1
As shown, the current worldwide 2020 IC market expectation of $345.8 billion is $39.0 billion less than the original MR20 forecast, which called for an 8% increase this year. A further breakdown of the total IC market and a forecast for each of the 33 IC product categories by market, units, and average selling price through 2024 is presented in the April Update.

IC Insights published its March Update on March 12. This Update included assumptions for the 2020 IC market that considered the potential impact of the coronavirus. When the March Update was released, the expectation at that time was that the majority of the impact on the global economy and IC market from Covid-19 would primarily be from market and production disruptions within China. However, the impact of Covid-19 has truly transformed into a worldwide issue with the U.S. and Europe now being the “hotspots” of this highly infectious and deadly virus. The data shown below illustrates how quickly things changed in the U.S. in just the past four weeks.

March 12, 2020 (IC Insights’ March Update released):
U.S. cases of Covid-19: 1,630; U.S. deaths attributed to Covid-19: 41
April 9, 2020:
U.S. cases of Covid-19: 454,615; U.S. deaths attributed to Covid-19: 16,074

As shown in Figure 1, IC Insights’ current baseline forecast for the IC market in 2020 calls for a 4% drop. Moreover, global GDP is now expected to post a decline this year that is at least as deep as the 2.1% drop that was registered in 2009. How rare is a decline in worldwide GDP? Before 2009, the previous year that global GDP went negative was 1946, 63 years ago!

If you’ve not already done so, now would be an excellent time to stay current with the latest developments and changing IC market conditions in this extremely uncertain year by subscribing to The McClean Report 2020, IC Insights’ flagship market research report and analysis of the IC Industry. Updates to The McClean Report will be released each month through November of this year.

Report Details: The McClean Report 2020
Additional details on IC market trends are provided in the 2020 edition of The McClean Report—A Complete Analysis and Forecast of the Integrated Circuit Industry. A subscription to The McClean Report includes free monthly updates from March through November (including the 200+ page Mid-Year Update), and free access to subscriber-only webinars throughout the year. An individual user license to The McClean Report is priced at $4,990 and includes an Internet access password. A multi-user worldwide corporate license is available for $7,990.

PDF Version of This Bulletin
A PDF version of this Research Bulletin can be downloaded from our website at

Arthur Hanson

Active member
How the coronavirus is dealt with will be key. I'm surprised UV C light is not being used extensively and production of such could easily be ramped up. It could be used on a macro level with protective glasses to a micro level with probes for lungs(for use by surgeons and trained people). It would be far faster and effective than constant hand washing and could be used like an air lock system where you go through a sterilization procedure for your outer body and clothes. This would be far more effective than social distancing in many areas and allow many functions now shut down to continue. We must learn to strike a careful balance between economic and biological damage, which will take wisdom and careful thought. What many are doing now will cause more damage than the disease in a significant percentage of cases. I have worked in serious bio labs that were set up to handle agents far, far more dangerous than corona, but not operating with the agents stored in special containment systems, since I was installing data distribution systems. I have also worked in operating bio labs where you had to go through multiple locks to get in.

I also know the semi/nanotech sector is already playing a key part in solutions being used and will play an even greater part in the near future in numerous ways and applications.

Daniel Nenni

Staff member
Gartner is predicting that overall worldwide semiconductor revenue will decline 0.9% in 2020 due to COVID-19, prior to the COVID-19 outbreak they were predicting growth of 12.5% for 2020.

SIA reported that global semiconductor sales dropped 2.4% month on month to US$34.5billion, though this was up 5% compared to February 2019. Overall sales were solid but month on month demand in China dropped 7.5% due to COVID-19 outbreak.

IC Insights now predicts 2020 IC market to be US$345.8billion, down -4% compared to 2019, and down considerably compared to previous forecasts.


TSMC reported Q1 revenue of US$10.34B, up 42% YoY