IPC recently announced the April 2018 findings from its North American Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. Industry shipments and orders in April continued to grow but at a slowing pace. The book-to-bill ratio decreased but remained strong at 1.08.
Total North American PCB shipments in April 2018 were up 8.8% compared to the same month last year. This year to date, shipments are 9.6% above the same period last year. Compared to the preceding month, April shipments reportedly decreased 14%.
“The North American PCB industry’s slower sales and order growth in April is unsurprising, as the industry settles into a more normal pace of growth after the recovery of the last three quarters,” said Sharon Starr, director of market research. “Also, business tends to peak in the last month of every quarter, often causing month-to-month decreases in the first month of the quarter, and this normal pattern can be seen in the April data. The outlook for this year remains encouraging, based on strong order growth in the past year and a book-to-bill ratio that has been above parity (1.0) for 15 consecutive months.”