| Hynix Semiconductor Inc (000660.KS: Quote, Profile, Research), the world's No. 2 memory chip maker, said on Monday it raised contract prices for computer memory chips by about 15 percent last month and expected further increases in May.
The healthy price gain confirmed the dynamic random access memory (DRAM) market has bottomed out after a 15-month slump, but analysts say a recovery this year could be short-lived due to a production drive by sector leader Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS: Quote, Profile, Research).
Makers of DRAM, after reeling from overproduction and slower PC demand, have pinned their hopes on spending cutbacks from cash-starved makers and improving demand ahead of the start of the new school year and the year-end shopping season.
"We have raised prices around 15 percent in April," said James Kim, vice president in charge of investor relations at Hynix.
Kim did not provide a breakdown of the increases between the first and latter half of April. He said previously that the DRAM contract price hike for early April was "minimal."
"We have expectations," Kim said, when asked about the prospect of price increases in May.
Japan's Elpida Memory Inc (6665.T: Quote, Profile, Research) also had raised prices of DRAM chips, mainly used in personal computers, by 5-10 percent in the first half of April. Samsung did not comment on its chip prices but analysts believe it also raised prices in April.