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LCD prices hit record low on oversupply, weak demand
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Published : Sep 7, 2011 - 19:13
Updated : Sep 7, 2011 - 19:13
Prices of liquid crystal display panels, a key export item for South Korea’s technology firms, plunged to all-time lows on oversupply and weak demand, industry data showed Wednesday.

The latest data compiled by DisplaySearch showed that not only the prices of large-size LCD panels for TVs, but also those of small panels for mobile phones, tablet PCs and personal computers trended downward in early September, as the global economic slowdown battered demand for consumer electronics.

The price of 40- to 42-inch LCD panels for high-definition TVs hit a record low of $215 as of Wednesday, down 4 percent from the end of August, according to DisplaySearch.

Large LCD panels were priced at $340 between January and April of last year, as demand outpaced supply, helping shore up the bottom line of the South Korean LCD makers.

The industry rivals quickly ramped up production on projections that TV demand in Europe and North America would be robust. Global TV demand, however, fell short of supply growth and consequently, the price of large-size LCD panels dropped below the $300 level in August 2010 and hit $232 five months ago.

LCD panels for TVs account for at least half of the revenues of Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Display Co., the world’s two largest LCD suppliers.

The price of 40- to 42-inch LCD panels using light-emitting diodes as backlight units also reached a historic low this month, down 2 percent from the end of August.

DisplaySearch said both TV makers and LCD panel suppliers have been squeezed by weak demand. Although demand will likely recover from the end of this month, a huge rebound in LCD panel prices is unlikely because TV makers are cautious about raising their inventory levels, the market researcher said.

Small-size LCD panels for laptops fell as much as 5 percent this month from end-August and 2-inch LCD panels for mobile handsets also drifted down, according to DisplaySearch. 

(Yonhap News)
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