China LCD TV panel demand to peak at the end of 2012

Louise Duffy | 20-12-2012

Higher-than-expected shipments of panels to Chinese TV-makers over the past three months has encouraged optimistic shipment forecasts for the remaining months of the year.

However, the next wave of demand for the New Year, Chinese Lunar New Year holidays and additional demand driven from China’s energy-saving subsidy, has yet to be proven, says analyst firm DisplaySearch.
Research director Deborah Yang says the company's latest surveys indicate that shipments are forecast to grow in November and reach a record 7.2 million units in December. There will be a decline in January and February 2013, but the drop-off will be much milder than usual. This implies that Chinese TV-makers are planning to carry higher levels of inventory early next year. This is likely due to a lack of confidence in panel availability.

Panel-makers worry not only that Chinese TV-makers but some global TV brands may make adjustments to their orders to bring them in line with actual market demand. Any increase in panel shipments, in particular to Chinese TV-makers, may increase the risk of oversupply in Q1 2013, which would cause a correction in TV panel prices.