TAIPEI -- Sales at Taiwan's 19 largest information technology companies rose 13.5% in July from a year earlier, the largest monthly gain this year, suggesting hardly any impact from the U.S.-China trade war.
Combined sales totaled 963.1 billion New Taiwan dollars ($31.2 billion), with 13 of the 19 companies reporting higher revenue. That's the fifth straight month of increased sales, and an improvement on 4% growth in June.
Because many in Taiwan's tech sector are contract electronics manufacturers working for the likes of Apple and Chinese smartphone maker Huawei Technologies, investors worldwide consider the monthly revenue data a leading indicator of the health of the global tech industry.
Foxconn Technology Group, formally known as Hon Hai Precision Industry, was the biggest driver. The iPhone assembler boosted revenue 25.5% on the year to NT$395.5 billion, an all-time high for July. Although demand for assembling Apple's newest smartphones has yet to enter the peak season, business related to servers and other offerings apparently surged.
The top four contract electronics makers, including Foxconn and Pegatron, all turned in higher sales in July. Sales at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., the world's largest contract chipmaker, climbed 3.8%. Though demand for semiconductors used in cryptocurrency mining has softened, orders for high-performance chips for servers were strong, as was demand for automotive chips.
Largan Precision's revenue rose about 20% thanks to its optical lenses for mobile phones. Demand from Apple has yet to shift into high gear, but Chinese demand for high-quality lenses is expanding.