US and global SEMIndexes show big gains for March

APRIL 1--The US SEMIndex--an equity index of 47 North American manufacturers of semiconductor equipment and materials--rose 24.77% during March to 240.29, according to Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI; San Jose, CA; www.semi.org).

APRIL 1--The US SEMIndex--an equity index of 47 North American manufacturers of semiconductor equipment and materials--rose 24.77% during March to 240.29, according to Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI; San Jose, CA; www.semi.org). By comparison, the tech-laden NASDAQ Composite Index rose 6.58% during the same period, while the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) jumped 16.52% for the month.

Ed White, semiconductor-equipment analyst at Lehman Brothers, noted that institutional investor interest in semiconductor-equipment stocks is strong, as a result of the early signs of a recovery in the industry. "Within technology, semiconductor equipment is being viewed as a more attractive area than others with unclear fundamentals, such as telecommunications, the Internet, or even semiconductors, and this may account for the relatively stronger performance of the SEMIndex," White said.

The Global SEMIndex, which closed up 19.10% for the month to 224.10, is a composite of 65 global SEMI members in the USA, Japan, and Europe.

The Global SEMIndex is comprised of 66 public semiconductor equipment, materials, and related services companies with individual market capitalizations of $50 million (US equivalent) or more. SEMIndex is updated every 1 to 2 minutes throughout the global trading day and maintained on SEMI's investor Web site: www.semindex.org.

SEMIndex differentiates the stock performance of global semiconductor equipment and materials (SEM) public companies from the SOX index, a more semiconductor-specific equity index comprised of 12 US-only chip manufacturers and four of the largest SEM sector US public companies. SEMIndex was initiated on January 4, 1999, at a value of 100. It is produced for SEMI by InvestorCom Inc. (NY).

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