Source: Reiner W. Kuehl, Linked In
Thick film SMD resistors are by far the mostly used components of this group worldwide. In contrast to thin film resistors they are made of precious metals (ruthenium, palladium, silver). In the last years high increases of precious metal price had fronted price pressure on the components by powerful users as automotive.
Now we have the situation that commodity thick film resistors cannot be produced break even by certain resistor makers. Currently two big Asian producers have stopped further thick film resistor production. Others refuse to produce bigger case sized products anymore.
On the other hand more and more companies offer new MELF-thin film products.