Printed circuit board shipments up over last year, but plateau in recovery may have been reached, IPC says

BANNOCKBURN, Ill., 26 Nov. 2010. Industry shipments of rigid printed circuit boards and flexible circuits combined increased by 13.7 percent in October, compared to the same month one year ago, say analysts at IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries in Bannockburn, Ill. Year to date, combined industry shipments were up 18.8 percent, and compared to September 2010, combined industry shipments for October 2010 decreased 14.7 percent.

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BANNOCKBURN, Ill., 26 Nov. 2010. Industry shipments of rigid printed circuit boards and flexible circuits combined increased by 13.7 percent in October, compared to the same month one year ago, say analysts at IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries in Bannockburn, Ill. Year to date, combined industry shipments were up 18.8 percent, and compared to September 2010, combined industry shipments for October 2010 decreased 14.7 percent.

IPC released these market numbers for the printed circuit board industry as part of its monthly North American Printed Circuit Board (printed circuit board) statistical program, which tracks business for rigid printed circuit boards, flexible circuits, and combined printed circuit boards and flexible circuits in the United States and Canada.

Rigid printed circuit board shipments were up 13.6 percent in October 2010 from October 2009. Year to date, rigid printed circuit board shipments were up 19.5 percent, and compared to the previous month, rigid printed circuit board shipments decreased 14.3 percent.

Flexible circuit shipments in October 2010 were up 14.7 percent compared to October 2009. Year to date, flexible circuit shipments increased 11 percent, and compared to the previous month, flexible circuit shipments decreased 18.6 percent, IPC analysts say.

"printed circuit board sales have continued to grow and now are back to about where they were in October 2008, just before the downturn hit the industry in North America," says Denny McGuirk, IPC president and chief executive officer. "The book-to-bill ratio has trended downward in the past five months as the growth in orders has slowed, signaling a plateau in the recovery," he added.

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 two to three months.

For more information contact IPC online at www.ipc.org.

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