Japan's Quake May Hurt Battery, Semiconductor-Wafer, LCD-Panel Markets

The global supply of lithium-ion batteries, chip wafers and liquid-crystal display panels may be curtailed after last week's earthquake in Japan, according to research reports.

Plant closures by Japanese manufacturers including Sony Corp. (6758) and Hitachi Chemical Co. will likely affect the rechargeable-battery market, Daiwa Securities Group Inc. said. Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co.'s stoppage of resin shipments may hurt output of integrated circuit chips, Barclays Plc said. Prices of LCD panels and memory chips may rise as the earthquake leads to potential shortages, IHS ISuppli said yesterday.

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