Mixed Results for North American Electronics Seen in April
The North American electronics industry has been recovering gradually from a slowdown that began in December 2013. The three-month rolling averages depicted in the graph below show a modest upturn for PCB and EMS sales in April, while semiconductor sales continued to fall. U.S. new orders for electronic products held steady in April after recovering in March. U.S. new orders tend to lead sales growth by one month.
IPC's PCB book-to-bill ratio, which normally leads PCB sales by three to six months, strengthened during Q1 after a long period of ratios below parity (1.00). The ratio reached positive territory at 1.01 in March and remained at that level in April. Ratios above parity indicate greater demand than supply, which may be a precursor of strengthening sales growth in the PCB industry. The current ratio suggests that the beginnings of a modest recovery may be seen by the end of Q2 2014.
All data cited in this report are based on rolling averages of the past three months, which smooths out some of the volatility in monthly data to show clearer trends.
Note on the graph:
All indices are based on the same baseline of the average month in 2000=100, and reflect a three-month rolling average.
Sources: IPC statistical programs for the EMS and PCB industries; SIA for semiconductor data; U.S. Census Bureau for U.S. new orders for computer and electronic products.
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Market Research Reports
World Market Size Estimates
||Billions of U.S. Dollars
|Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs)
||IPC, World PCB Production Report for the Year 2012
|Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS)
||Electronic Trends Publications
|Electronic Equipment (Final Assembly)
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