Chipmaker TSMC Misses Revenue Estimates As Demand Slows

Contract chipmaking giant TSMC is expected to miss analysts’ earnings estimates when it reports its figures later this week, making it the latest tech company to suffer the effects of slowing consumer demand.

The company’s fourth-quarter revenue is expected to rise 43 percent to 625.5 billion new Taiwan dollars ($20.6bn, £17bn), according to unaudited monthly revenue data published by the company.

That is below analysts’ estimates of 636bn new Taiwan dollars.

Analysts expect TSMC’s net profit for the quarter to rise 74 percent year-on-year to 288.46bn new Taiwan dollars, according to a poll by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Image credit: ASML

Disruption

In the quarter a year earlier the company reported 166.23bn new Taiwan dollars in net profit.

TSMC in October lowered its capital expenditure forecast to $36bn for 2022 from an earlier goal of at least $40bn due to weaker demand for semiconductors.

The company spent $8.75bn on capital expenditure in the third quarter. Some analysts have warned it may further delay spending on expansion in 2023.

TSMC, as the exclusive supplier of the Apple Silicon chips used in iPhones and Macs, may have been affected by disruption of iPhone assembly at a major plant in China’s Zhengzhou triggered by rising Covid-19 cases.

Chip glut

The Taiwan-based company’s figures come after Samsung Electronics released preliminary figures indicating its operating profits dropped 69 percent year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2022 as consumer bought fewer smartphones and other electronic devices.

In addition to making electronics itself, Samsung is also the world’s biggest producer of memory chips.

The slump in electronics demand that began in 2022 followed a huge surge in consumption during the previous two years amidst Covid-19 lockdowns.

Matthew Broersma

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

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