Updated from 6:19 p.m. ESTSo much for a price
Lynch, observing that the comment was presumably based on an improving outlook for average selling prices, asked what the company was expecting in the way of ASPs. "It's hard to feel comfortable, given that we're going into seasonal weakness in
calendar Q1, to really understand how the cash burn doesn't stay the same," he pointed out. But the company flatly declined to give an ASP estimate, saying industry prices are too volatile to predict. Also on the call, management reiterated that its capital expenditure in fiscal year 2003, now under way, will be between $800 million and $1.2 billion, as it said in September. Adding to Micron's financial woes, market research outfit Gartner Dataquest reported today that No. 2 vendor Micron lost ground in the DRAM market in 2002. The company's market share slipped from 19.1% in 2001 to an estimated 17.2% this year. Micron's performance compared unfavorably with that of Samsung, which strengthened its No. 1 spot, increasing its share of the pie by 4 percentage points, to 31%. Still more important, Samsung managed to make a profit throughout the year. By contrast, the last time Micron finished a quarter in the black was exactly two years ago, in its first quarter of fiscal 2001. Gartner also said that in 2002, global DRAM revenue surged 37%, to $16.2 billion.