PCB industry shows encouraging signs

AUGUST 31, 2007 IPC--Association Connecting Electronics Industries (Bannockburn, IL, USA) has announced its findings from its monthly Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program.

AUGUST 31, 2007 IPC--Association Connecting Electronics Industries (Bannockburn, IL, USA; www.ipc.org), a global trade association of 2400 member companies representing all facets of the electronic interconnection industry, has announced its findings from its monthly Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. Rigid PCB shipments are down 7.1% and bookings are down 1.8% in July 2007 from July 2006. Year to date, rigid PCB shipments are down 10.4% and bookings are down 14.6%. Compared to the previous month, rigid PCB shipments decreased 17.7% and rigid bookings decreased 17.0%. The book-to-bill ratio for the North American rigid PCB industry in July 2007 remained above parity at 1.02.

Flexible circuit shipments in July 2007 were down 0.8% and bookings were up 24.6% compared to July 2006. Year to date, flexible circuit shipments are down 2.1% and bookings are up 9.1%. Compared to the previous month, flexible circuit shipments decreased 13.7% and flex bookings were down 12.8%. The North American flexible circuit book-to-bill ratio declined but remained positive at 1.04 in July.

For rigid PCBs and flexible circuits combined, industry shipments in July 2007 decreased 6.7% from July 2006, and orders booked decreased 0.5% from July 2006. Year to date, combined industry shipments are down 9.9% and bookings are down 13.3%. Compared to the previous month, combined industry shipments for July 2007 are down 17.5% and bookings are down 16.7%. The combined (rigid and flex) industry book-to-bill ratio in July 2007 remained above parity at 1.02.

"We are starting to see some signs of a modest recovery in the North American PCB industry," said IPC president Denny McGuirk. "This year's sales are still running behind last year by almost 10%, but year-on-year growth rates are improving and backlogs are starting to go up," he added. "Combined with a positive book-to-bill ratio, these are all encouraging signs."

The information in IPC's monthly PCB industry statistics is based on data provided by a representative sample of both rigid and flexible PCB manufacturers in the USA and Canada. IPC publishes the PCB Book-to-Bill Ratio and the Interconnect Manufacturing Services (IMS) Business Report each month. Statistics for the previous month are not available until the last week of the following month.


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