SMT, PCB Electronics Industry News

North American PCB Business Reflects Normal Seasonal Slowdown.

Sep 02, 2014

IPC Releases PCB Industry Results for July 2014.

IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries® announced the July findings from its monthly North American Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. Sales and orders were weaker in July, but the book-to-bill ratio held steady at parity.

Slump in Sales and Orders is Typical for July.

Total North American PCB shipments decreased 2.3 percent in July 2014 from July 2013, leaving year-to-date shipment growth flat at -0.6 percent. Compared to the previous month, PCB shipments were down 13.0 percent.

PCB bookings decreased by 6.3 percent compared to July 2013, putting the year-to-date order growth rate at -6.1 percent. Order growth declined 14.4 percent in July compared to the previous month.

The North American PCB book-to-bill ratio remained at parity at 1.00 in July.

July is typically a slow month for the PCB industry and this year is no exception,” said Sharon Starr, IPC’s director of market research. “The PCB book-to-bill ratio has been hovering around 1.00 since February, which explains the flat year-to-date sales growth we are seeing,” she added.

Detailed Data Available.

The next edition of IPC’s North American PCB Market Report, containing detailed July data from IPC’s PCB Statistical Program, will be available in the next week. The monthly report presents detailed findings on rigid PCB and flexible circuit sales and orders, including separate rigid and flex book-to-bill ratios, military and medical market growth, demand for prototypes, and other timely data. This report is available free to current participants in IPC’s PCB Statistical Program and by subscription to others. 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 six 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 not available until the last week of the following month.


IPC (www.IPC.org) is a global industry association based in Bannockburn, Ill., dedicated to the competitive excellence and financial success of its 3,500 member companies 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.; Stockholm, Sweden; Moscow, Russia; Bangalore and New Delhi, India; Bangkok, Thailand; and Qingdao, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Suzhou and Beijing, China.

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