NAND chips prices up after Japan earthquake, tsunami, nuclear meltdown fears

According to Computer World, the price of NAND chips increased as a result of the natural disasters happened in Japan in March, 2011.

NAND flash memory chip is an electronic non-volatile computer storage device, which is erasable and reprogrammable electrically. It was invented by Fujio Masuoka – a Toshiba worker and commercialized by Intel Corporation. The six producers of this chip are Intel, Micron, SK Hynix, Samsung, SanDisk and Toshiba. It is manufactured in a factory or fabrication plant (fab). At the fab, NAND chip is etched onto wafers which are then sliced into individual die, tested and packaged. It is widely used in industrial robotics, electronics and other digital devices such as personal computers, cameras and mobile phones. Thus, consumer product manufacturers (e.g. Apple, Dell, Samsung) are the main buyers of NAND flash memory chip. Because its price is getting cheaper while its productivity is getting higher and the electrical industry is growing fast, the demand of NAND flash memory chip increases.

After Japan earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown in 2011, memory chip price shot up due to fabrication plant shutdown, power outage and supply chain shortage aftermath. Because Japan accounts for 35.7% of the world NAND flash chip production, these natural disasters caused a huge decrease in the supply of the chip, which made the supply curve shift up, to the left. The equilibrium price went up because the supply of NAND chips decreases but the demand is still the same.

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Source: http://www.computerworld.com/article/2470864/smartphones/chip-prices-up-after-j apan-earthquake–tsunami–nuclear-meltdown-fears.html

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