Business and Finance

Better Buy: Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) vs. Taiwan Semiconductor (TSMC)

Which hot chipmaker is the better buy for 2021?

The Motley Fool
Date: Jan 13, 2021
By: Leo Sun


Shares of Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (NYSE:TSM) have both doubled over the past 12 months. AMD dazzled investors with robust sales of its CPUs and GPUs. TSMC, the world's largest contract chipmaker, benefited from soaring orders for new chips.

Both companies profited from Intel's (NASDAQ:INTC) misfortunes. Intel's chip shortage, which was caused by a difficult jump from 14nm to 10nm chips, caused PC makers to buy more AMD chips.

Intel's own foundry also fell behind TSMC in the "process race" to create smaller and more power-efficient chips. That failure allowed AMD, which outsources its chip production to TSMC, to produce more advanced chips.

That's why AMD and TSMC both easily outperformed Intel, which lost more than 10% of its value over the past 12 months, as well as the benchmark Philadelphia Semiconductor Index, which advanced nearly 60%. Let's take a fresh look at both chipmakers to see which stock is the better buy.

The differences between AMD and TSMC

AMD is a fabless chipmaker that doesn't manufacture its own chips like Intel. It develops x86 CPUs for PCs and servers, GPUs, and other types of custom chips, but a foundry like TSMC manufactures the chips.

AMD competes against Intel in the x86 CPU market and NVIDIA (NASDAQ:NVDA) in the discrete GPU market. AMD controlled 39.8% of the x86 CPU market in the first quarter of 2021, according to PassMark, up from 33.2% a year ago. Intel's share tumbled from 66.7% to 60.2%.

Foxconn ventures into Chinese electric vehicle market

Company building presence in Zhejiang, Jiangsu provinces for making EVs

Taiwan News
Date: 2021/01/13
By: Huang Tzu-ti, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Foxconn announces joint venture with Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. (Foxconn photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn is making inroads into China’s electric vehicle (EV) market with joint ventures and investment in relevant technologies.

On Wednesday (Jan. 13), Foxconn announced plans to establish a joint venture with Chinese automotive company Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. The company will be dedicated to the streamlined design and production of smart and electric automobiles, according to a press release.

Meanwhile, Hongfujin Precision Industry (Shenzhen) Co., a Foxconn affiliate, has founded the Futeng New Energy Automotive Technology Co. in Nanjing, which will be developing and manufacturing automobile components, wrote CNA.    [FULL  STORY]

TSMC top pick on stabilization fund list to support market

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/13/2021
By: Wu Chia-jung and Frances Huang

CNA file photo

Taipei, Jan. 13 (CNA) Contract chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) was the top pick on the investment list of the National Stabilization Fund, as the fund entered the local equity market in its latest efforts to prop up the market, the fund's committee said Wednesday.

According to the committee, the stabilization fund injected a total of NT$757 million (US$266 million) during the period between March 20 and Oct. 12 in 2020 to reinforce investor confidence in a market in turmoil over the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the period, the fund spent NT$168 million on shares of TSMC, the most heavily weighted stock in the local market, accounting for more than 22 percent of the total investment, making the chipmaker the top investment on the list, the committee said.

The investment in TSMC led to the fund raking in NT$121 million in net profit, plus NT$3.25 million in cash dividends issued by the chipmaker, which represented a return of more than 70 percent.    [FULL  STORY]

CSC to lift domestic steel prices

SUPPLY ISSUES: The steelmaker said that it was keeping to its principles of ‘smooth and stable pricing,’ while it called for industry discipline in an overheated market

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 14, 2021
By: Angelica Oung / Staff reporter

A worker walks past rolls of steel inside a China Steel Corp factory in Kaohsiung on Aug. 26, 2016.
Photo: Tyrone Siu, Reuters

China Steel Corp (CSC, 中鋼), the nation’s largest integrated steelmaker, yesterday said that it would raise domestic steel prices by 9.5 percent for delivery next month, with the hike exceeding market expectations.

The adjustment is the eighth straight month of increases for the Kaohsiung-based company.

Prices are to increase by NT$2,200 per tonne for hot-rolled steel, hot-rolled plates and electro-galvanized sheets, NT$2,500 per tonne for cold-rolled steel and NT$3,000 per tonne for electrical sheets, CSC said in a statement.

The company attributed the price hikes to increased raw material costs for steelmakers and robust demand for steel, it said.    [FULL  STORY]

HTC has reported revenue growth for the second consecutive month

Phone Arena
Date: Jan 12, 2021
By: Joshua Swingle

The HTC U11

It’s that time of the month when we review HTC’s latest revenue numbers and brace for disappointment. But in an unexpected twist, this time the Taiwan-based brand has positive news to report.

HTC experienced growth in November and December 2020

For the last month of 2020, HTC reported NT$615 million ($21.96 million) in unaudited consolidated revenue. That’s a small increase of 1.02% versus the same period a year earlier, much better than the median decline of 42.03% experienced throughout 2020.

The impact of the all-important annual holiday season was visible in HTC’s latest numbers too. In comparison to November, the company’s monthly sales numbers climbed a decent 10.68%.

Singapore’s DBS Bank picks Taiwan for third technology development center

Singapore and India's Hyderabad also host DBS financial technology hubs

Taiwan News
Date: 2021/01/12
By: Matthew Strong, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

DBS headquarters in Singapore (Wikimedia, Nicolas Lannuzel photo) 

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Singapore-based DBS Bank has chosen Taiwan as the site for its third technology development center after Singapore and India, reports said Tuesday (Jan. 12).

The company was planning to recruit at least 30 information technology experts before the second quarter of 2021, CNA reported. Taiwan would become the financial group’s third IT center after its home base of Singapore and the Indian city of Hyderabad.

As the pandemic has caused a surge in the use of digital financial services, local talent can join in to create new technologies to provide customers with even more advanced services, DBS Bank Taiwan CEO Lim Him Chuan (林鑫川) said.

Other executives praised Taiwan for its handling of the pandemic and for the presence of a world-renowned high-tech manufacturing base.    [FULL  STORY]

Machine tool industry forecast to rebound in Q2

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/12/2021
By: Chung Jung-feng and Frances Huang

CNA file photo

Taipei, Jan. 12 (CNA) The local machine tool industry is forecast to stage a rebound in the second quarter of this year after weakness in 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic caused global demand to plunge, the Taiwan Machine Tool & Accessory Builders' Association (TMBA) said Tuesday.

Citing a survey of its members, the TMBA said momentum will continue into the third quarter, forecasting that the production value for the whole of 2021 will increase by 15-20 percent year-on-year.

In 2020, Taiwan's machine tool exports plunged 29.7 percent from a year earlier to NT$2.154 billion (US$75.58 billion) after outbound sales for December fell 18.2 percent from a year earlier to NT$206 million, according to data compiled by the association. The December exports, however, rose 9.3 percent from a month earlier.

The 2020 slowdown came after the pandemic prompted many countries to implement lockdowns, which led to a shrinkage in global demand for machine tools, the TMBA said.

Chunghwa Telecom marks first growth since 2015 thanks to 5G service tariff

Taipei Times
Date: Jan 13, 2021
By: Lisa Wang / Staff reporter

A logo of Chunghwa Telecom Co is seen at the IEEE Global Communications Conference in Taipei on Dec. 9 last year.
Photo: Ann Wang, Reuters

Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), the nation’s biggest telecom service provider, on Monday reported that net profit last year increased 1.9 percent following the debut of 5G services, its first annual growth since 2015.

Net profit expanded to NT$33.42 billion (US$1.17 billion), up from NT$32.79 billion in 2019, and surpassed the company’s forecast of NT$30.91 billion to NT$32.47 billion.

That translated into earnings per share of NT$4.31, up from NT$4.23 in 2019.

Revenue last year remained little changed at NT$207.61 billion, up from NT$207.52 billion in 2019, but falling short of the company’s guidance of NT$214.1 billion to NT$215.29 billion.

Taiwan’s Cathay United Bank opens branch in Myanmar

Taiwanese banks targeting investors under New Southbound Policy

Taiwan News
Date: 2021/01/07
By:  Matthew Strong, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Cathay United Bank opening branch in Yangon, Myanmar.  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Cathay United Bank opened a branch in Myanmar’s largest city, Yangon, Wednesday (Jan. 6), in a move seen as a step forward under Taiwan’s New Southbound Policy.

The office’s main aim is to assist Taiwanese businesses in investing in the rapidly developing economy of the Southeast Asian nation, CNA reported. Taiwan in 2016 launched its New Southbound Policy, targeting 18 countries in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Pacific, including Australia and New Zealand, to achieve closer relations in a wide variety of spheres, from trade and investment to culture and education.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan consumer prices rise for 2nd straight month in December

Focus Taiwan
Date: 01/07/2021
By: Yang Shu-ching and Evelyn Kao

CNA file photo

Taipei, Jan. 7 (CNA) Taiwan's consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.06 percent in December from a year earlier, marking the second consecutive month of year-on-year growth, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) reported Thursday.

DGBAS official Tsao Chih-hung (曹志弘) said that the 0.06 percent rise can be partially attributed to increases in the price of meat, vegetables, plane tickets and the cost of personal items, although the growth was somewhat offset by falls in the price of fruit, oil, fuel and hotel prices.

On a month-on-month basis, the CPI rose 0.03 percent and after seasonal adjustments also grew 0.17 percent due to the rise in oil and fruit prices, which were offset to some extent by a fall in clothing and vegetable prices, the agency said.

For 2020 as a whole, the CPI fell 0.23 percent from a year earlier to its lowest level in five years.    [FULL  STORY]