MARCH 23--According to Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI; Mountain View, CA; www.semi.org), the North American-based manufacturers of semiconductor equipment reported a February 2001 book-to-bill ratio of 0.77; that is, $77 in orders were received for every $100 worth of products shipped. The three-month average of worldwide bookings in February 2001 was $1.8 billion. This value is 4% below the revised January 2001 level of $1.9 billion and 22% below the $2.3 billion in orders posted in February 2000. The three-month average of worldwide shipments in February 2001 was $2.4 billion, which is 1% above the revised January 2001 value of $2.3 billion but 48% higher than the $1.6 billion shipments level of February 2000.
The sharp decline in the book-to-bill ratio is attributed to order cancellations, order push-outs, and the pessimistic market conditions.