They’re fishing around for more chips!
That brand new car you were hoping to buy, has it been delayed? What about the top of the range new model cell-phone you wanted? What? That has been delayed too?
And COVID19 is partly to blame in at least two ways. The lockdown saw a drop in car sales and of course the modern car uses computer chips, As a result, car manufacturers cut down on their orders for chips. Conversely, the lockdown resulted in more people working from home increasing the demand for computers and other electronic gadgets, thereby causing demand to outstrip supply. When the pandemic situation eased, car production picked up again but chips had not been stockpiled and again demand exceeded immediate supply.
Monopoly producers might also contribute to problems with the supply of chips. Taiwan and South Korea between them allegedly account for 83% of the world’s supply of chips. No wonder China would like to take over Taiwan. Also, it probably hasn’t been helped by Huawei building up a stockpile of chips before the United States applied trade restrictions blocking it from ordering any more.
One cannot but wonder how all this will affect the price of electronic items.
(This is a very short précis of articles appearing on the BBC website of which I gratefully acknowledge.)