North American semiconductor-equipment book-to-bill ratio rose in October

NOVEMBER 26--The North American semiconductor-equipment book-to-bill ratio rose in October to 0.71, with orders increasing by 5% and shipments dropping by 5%, according to Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI; www.semi.org).

NOVEMBER 26--The North American semiconductor-equipment book-to-bill ratio rose in October to 0.71, with orders increasing by 5% and shipments dropping by 5%, according to Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International (SEMI; www.semi.org). October orders (bookings) rose to $651.1 million, up from a revised September figure of $619.2 million. Preliminary shipments (billings) were at $916.2 million, down from a revised September figure of 967.4 million.

"Excess capacity and weak end-market demand continue to beleaguer the semiconductor-equipment industry," said Stanley Myers, president and CEO of SEMI. "While the decline in orders has abated, the average monthly shipment figure continues to weaken and there is no appreciable indication of a near-term trend reversal."

This is the third straight month that the book-to-bill ratio has risen.

The latest bookings figure is 78% below the $2.99 billion in orders posted in October 2000. October 2000 marked the orders peak of the current cycle for North American-based manufacturers. The billings figure is 64% below the October 2000 billings level of $2.57 billion. October 2000 also marked the billings peak of the current cycle.

The SEMI book-to-bill ratio is a three-month moving average of bookings to three-month moving average of billings for the North American semiconductor-equipment industry.

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