LCD TV Market To Grow Price Drop Up To 26% In 2008

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Year end research by Display Search shows that the LCD panel market for 2008 is expected to grow about 18% from 379.5 million units in 2007 to 447.7 million units by 2008, with LCD TV panels likely to top the application list with the most dramatic growth of 26% followed by notebook panels at 14% and monitor panels at 12%.

 Year end research by Display Search shows that the LCD panel market for 2008 is expected to grow about 18% from 379.5 million units in 2007 to 447.7 million units by 2008, with LCD TV panels likely to top the application list with the most dramatic growth of 26% followed by notebook panels at 14% and monitor panels at 12%.

In tandem with increasingly strong demand for LCD TV-use panels for 2008, the flagship size category has migrated from 32-inch to 40/42-inch and 46-inch at a rapid pace, and 52-inch LCD panels are likely to open up a new market, spurring up full-scale competition with 50-inch range PDP TVs. Monitor panels are also projected to become larger with the size standard shifting from 17-inch to 19/22-inch wide, and a more than 95% of notebook panels will be comprised of the wide format.

On the other hand, fabrication lines that are planned to come on line in 2008 are Samsung Electronics’ T8-2 (8th-generation) line slated to begin mass production from the third quarter of 2008, Chi Mei Optoelectronics’ Fab 6 (6th-generation) line, and Century’s 5G line. In 2009, a larger number of new lines such as LG.Philips LCD’s P8 line, AUO’s 8G line and Sharp’s 10G line are predicted to be put into operations compared to the previous year. Therefore, production proportion at 6G and more advanced lines is predicted to rise from 46.3% in the first quarter of 2007 to 65.4% by the fourth quarter of 2009.

 

As demand for large-size panels picked up dramatically in the second and third quarter of 2007, resulting in tight supply, companies have difficulties in procuring LCD panels. However, the supply has become stable in the fourth quarter and is projected to become excessive in the first quarter of 2008 when demand for panels weakens due to seasonal effects. However, the supply is forecast to tighten again from the second quarter of 2008, driven by limited supply capacity and rising demand for panels.

Prices for LCD TV panels are forecast to slide by 4% to 11% from 2007 through 2008. The average selling price for 32-inch LCD TV panels that continued on an upward curve for the full year of 2007 are likely to drop a negligible 4% from $332 in December 2007 to $320 in December 2008. 37-inch panel prices that echoed the trend for 32-inch are also projected to decrease by almost 7% from $440 to $410 for the corresponding period. 40-inch and 42-inch LCD TV panel prices, which moved down faster than that for 30-inch range due to competition with 40-inch range PDP TVs in 2007, may also fall roughly 11%.

The upward trend in panel prices for 2007 allowed the majority of LCD panel manufacturers to enjoy profits. Despite a slowdown in demand for the first quarter of 2008, the supply glut can be adjustable, and the supply will probably even become tight from the second quarter, leading to a rebound in panel prices. Therefore, panel manufacturers’ operating profits are forecast to improve from 2007.  

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