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South Korea’s Semiconductor Output Significantly Rises

Chip exports continue to grow, boosting optimism for the economy

High-performance memory chips supplied to Nvidia among drivers

Tweet on South Korea chip production

Chart: S. Korea

South Korea’s output of semiconductors jumped the most in 14 years in February in an indication of ongoing recovery in the country’s most important industrial sector and global tech demand.

Production jumped 65.3% from a year earlier, the biggest rise since late 2009, according to data released Friday by the National Statistics Agency. Shipments of semiconductors also rose 59%, even though it was weaker than 62.7% in January. Inventory shrank 16.2%, falling for a second month in another sign of strong demand.

The favorable numbers, released in a report showing a larger-than-expected expansion of overall industrial production, suggest momentum in domestic economic growth will continue as semiconductors account for the biggest share of South Korea’s exports. Production might have been bigger had the Lunar New Year holiday taken place in January like last year instead of February.

Image: Chips