IPC Releases PCB Industry Results for September 2019


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IPC — Association Connecting Electronics Industries announced today the September 2019 findings from its North American Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. Sales and orders continued to outpace last year and the preceding month in September, while the book-to-bill ratio strengthened to 1.04.

Total North American PCB shipments in September 2019 were up by 3.8% compared to the same month last year. Year-to-date sales growth as of September remained positive at 7%. Compared to the preceding month, September shipments increased 10.2%.

PCB bookings in September increased by 12.2% year-over-year, pushing year-to-date order growth up to 3%. Bookings in September were up by 2.5% from the previous month.

"Business growth is continuing in the North American PCB industry, based on uniformly positive September results in both sales and orders, as well as an increase in the book-to-bill ratio," said Sharon Starr, IPC's director of market research. "The growth cycle that began in mid-2017 has continued for over two years, although year-on-year growth rates have been modest in recent months. The strengthening book-to-bill ratios in the last two months are good news, but they were preceded by three months at or below parity. This indicates the likelihood of slow but mostly positive sales growth in the next two quarters."

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Detailed Data Available

The third-quarter 2019 edition of IPC’s North American PCB Market Report, containing detailed data from IPC’s PCB Statistical Program, will be published by mid-November. The quarterly report presents detailed findings on rigid PCB and flexible circuit sales and orders, including separate rigid and flex book-to-bill ratios, growth trends by product types and company size tiers, demand for prototypes, sales growth to military and medical markets, and other timely data. This report is available free to current participants in IPC’s PCB Statistical Program and by subscription to others. PCB companies that are IPC members doing business in North America are invited to contact marketresearch@ipc.org for information about participating. More information about this report can be found at www.ipc.org/market-research-reports.

Interpreting the Data

The book-to-bill ratios are calculated by dividing the value of orders booked over the past three months by the value of sales billed during the same period from companies in IPC's survey sample. A ratio of more than 1.00 suggests that current demand is ahead of supply, which is a positive indicator for sales growth over the next three to twelve months. A ratio of less than 1.00 indicates the reverse.

Year-on-year and year-to-date growth rates provide the most meaningful view of industry growth. Month-to-month comparisons should be made with caution as they reflect seasonal effects and short-term volatility. Because bookings tend to be more volatile than shipments, changes in the book-to-bill ratios from month to month might not be significant unless a trend of more than three consecutive months is apparent. It is also important to consider changes in both bookings and shipments to understand what is driving changes in the book-to-bill ratio.

IPC's monthly PCB industry statistics are based on data provided by a representative sample of both rigid PCB and flexible circuit manufacturers selling in the USA and Canada. IPC publishes the PCB book-to-bill ratio at the end of each month. Statistics for the current month are normally available in the last week of the following month.

About IPC

IPC (www.IPC.org) is a global industry association based in Bannockburn, Ill., dedicated to the competitive excellence and financial success of its 5,600-member company sites which represent all facets of the electronics industry, including design, printed board manufacturing, electronics assembly, and test. As a member-driven organization and leading source for industry standards, training, market research, and public policy advocacy, IPC supports programs to meet the needs of an estimated $2 trillion global electronics industry. IPC maintains additional offices in Taos, N.M.; Washington, D.C.; Atlanta, Ga.; Stockholm, Sweden; Brussels, Belgium; Moscow, Russia; Bangalore and New Delhi, India; Bangkok, Thailand; and Qingdao, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Suzhou and Beijing, China.

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