They're the man, the man with the Midas touch
price of gold has forced chip packaging
houses to jack up their prices.
ASE has started raising its prices for new products and
contracts and SPIL is expected to follow. According to Digitimes
chip packagers are speeding up their transition to copper
wire processes to avoid needing to use so much gold in their products. However
high gold prices are eating into their bottom lines.
Gold wire bonding still accounts for more than 70 per
cent of some suppliers' total packaged shipments and is a key part in their
gross margin. ASE saw its margins drop by two per cent and SPIL
revealed in its quarterly financial report that gross margin for the first
quarter decreased to 16 per cent from 20.1 per cent.
Gold costs US$1,250 an ounce which is an all-time high. (When it hits $1,500 I'm selling my fillings. sub.ed.)