(Bloomberg) — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.’s quarterly sales jumped to a record, underscoring how the world’s largest contract chipmaker is benefiting from an ongoing shortage in the silicon that power everything from cars to smartphones.
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Revenue for the third quarter climbed to NT$414.7 billion ($14.8 billion), in line with the roughly NT$413 billion average of analyst estimates. September sales came in at NT$152.7 billion, a 20% increase from a year earlier.
TSMC typically gets a third-quarter boost from pre-holiday orders and new gadgets from companies including Apple Inc., whose iPhone 13 series has been met with strong demand since its launch late last month. But capacity constraints have limited the Taiwanese chipmaker’s ability to fully capitalize on the boom and it has also had to divert resources to producing lower-priced chips for industries like automobiles, where supply shortages are most acute.
What Bloomberg Intelligence Says:
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing’s 3Q revenue could meet guidance of $14.7 billion with the support of strong orders, especially for its 7- and 5-nanometer (nm) chips, from customers such as Apple and AMD. But its operating income may miss the $5.97 billion estimated by consensus, we believe. Rapidly-weakening growth momentum in Android smartphones, especially in mid- and low-end models, may affect shipments of TSMC’s high-margin mature-node chips.
— Charles Shum, analyst
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There are signs the crunch is getting worse. Lead times in the industry — the gap between putting in a semiconductor order and taking delivery — rose for the ninth month in a row to an average of 21.7 weeks in September, according to Susquehanna Financial Group. That is by far the longest since the firm began tracking the data in 2017.
Shares of TSMC fell 0.9% in Taipei on Friday, trimming their gains for this year to 8.5%. The company is scheduled to report third-quarter earnings on Oct. 14.
(Updates with TSMC share price. An earlier version of the story was corrected to fix the unit in the second paragraph.)
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