DRAMeXchange, a division of TrendForce, today reported that the average contract price of 4GB PC DRAM modules increased over 20% between September and October of 2016 (jumping from US$14.5 to US$17.5). This increase is being caused by production capacity shifting from PC-centric DRAM towards mobile and server DRAM, which has seen a major increase in a demand.
PC DRAM only accounts for less than 20% of overall DRAM production. The already low inventories of PC DRAM combined with the higher than expected demand for products with DRAM means that the PC DRAM market will be severely under-supplied. The result of this is higher prices for all types of DRAM.
TrendForce also reports that DRAM price increases are proof of the changing paradigm between the three top memory makers: Samsung, Hynix, and Micron, which TrendForce reports have “opted for co-existence as the best way to maximize their own profitability.” They are, therefore, “turning away from aggressively competing for market share through price reduction and capacity expansion.”
TrendForce reports that the three top suppliers will keep their capital expenditures for 2017 the same level as last year or lower them even further. So this means prices for PC DRAM will continue to go up.