North American printed circuit board shipments in April increased 1.6 percent compared to April 2013, but declined 12 percent from March 2014, according to Association Connecting Electronics Industries (IPC).
New orders (bookings) for boards dropped 1.5 percent compared to April 2013 and fell 8. 1 percent from March 2014, IPC said.
The board book-to-bill ratio in April was 1.01, the same as the month before. A ratio of 1.01 means board manufacturers received $101 in new orders for every $101 of orders that they shipped in April. A ratio of more than 1.00 suggests that current demand is ahead of supply, a positive indicator for sales growth over the next three to six months, according to IPC.
"With year-to-date growth rates improving but still negative, and a book-to-bill ratio just barely in positive territory for the second month, the North American PCB industry appears to be moving very slowly toward a modest recovery this year," said Sharon Starr, IPC’s director of market research. She said the negative month-to-month growth rate in April reflect normal seasonal patterns.
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