LCD TV Panels Down 0.9% Monthly in November

WitsView, part of TrendForce of Taiwan, reported sales of LCD panels for TV as reaching 22.79 million in November, only 0.9% down on October, as brands looked to keep inventories solid for the Chinese New Year and Christmas sales. Because of high pricing for 32″ panels, which are hitting the profits of set makers, brands are promoting bigger sets.

The company said that LG Display was at a new high level of 4.95 million TV LCDs in November, up 8.4%, while sets at 55″ and above were up 13%. UltraHD represented 45% of the firm’s panel sales in TV, the highest share of the panel makers, according to WitsView.

Samsung Display saw 40″ displays rising from 1.5 million to 1.55 million as brands stocked up ahead of the planned closure of the L7-1 fab.

The good sales didn’t extend to Innolux, which was down 7.6% to 3.5 million as projects to promote small 23.6″ TVs came to an end. The firm is said to be moving to make more 39.5″ panels on its G6 lines, as it has not been able to get yields to the desired level for 65″ panels and can take advantage of demand from Samsung’s drop in 40″.

CSOT is making the most of an expansion to its G8.5 fab and got to 3.07 million units, up 0.7% and very slightly ahead of BOE. WitsView said that BOE’s TV panel volumes have declined for five months as it looks to prioritise notebook panels. In November, its 32″ panels were 1.94 million, down 30% from a peak of 2.78 million earlier in the year.

AUO’s TV panels fell 1% to 2.38 million as it re-aligned production. AUO has completed a capacity boost of its L8B fab and has pushed sales of 55″ panels up by almost 30% between Q2 and Q4.

Iris Hu, research manager of WitsView, expects a drop of 9% in December in panels for TV, because of advanced production by LG Display and the closure of the Samsung L7-1. Hu estimates the annual total of panels at 259.5 million, down by 3.8% in volume, but up 6.9% in area, as the average diagonal has increased by 2.2″ to 43.6″