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August 9, 1987

1988 SHOULD BE A BOOM YEAR

By CBR Staff Writer

A flurry of excitement over shares of semiconductor capital equipment makers has been generated by a Wall Street Journal piece suggesting that the improvement in the health of America’s chipmakers has led to an uptick in demand for leading edge equipment for fabricating and testing chips, particularly high-performance microprocessors: Dataquest is forecasting overall sales this year to rise 10% to $5,800m – still a far cry from the $8,400m in 1984 – with testers and wafer steppers leading the way; companies named include Teradyne Inc, Boston, with backlog up 69% in six months; GCA Corp, Andover, Massachusetts; LTX Corp, Westwood, Massachusetts; and the Utratech Stepper Inc unit of General Signal; the real excitement stems from the belief that 1988 should be a boom year, and for once the Japanese are stuffed with excess capacity, and it is US orders that are leading the way.

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