BANNOCKBURN, IL — The 90-day moving average orders at North American printed circuit board fabricators were down in April on a year-over-year basis.
Total North American PCB shipments decreased 1% in April and year-to-date shipment growth remained at -1.3%. Compared to the previous month, PCB shipments were down 12.1%.
PCB bookings decreased 6.3% compared to April 2014, bringing the year-to-date order growth rate to -0.7%. Orders decreased 15.1% in April compared to the previous month.
The book-to-bill ratio decreased 30 basis points sequentially to 1.02. The ratio is 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 the survey sample. It was the seventh straight month the ratio was above the 1.0 threshold considered to be an indicator of impending sales growth.
“North American PCB sales continued slightly below last year’s level, and orders, which rallied in the fourth quarter of 2014 and remained strong in recent months, also fell below last year’s level in April,” said Sharon Starr, IPC’s director of market research. “This caused a reduction in the book-to-bill ratio for April, but it is still in positive territory, which is an indicator of probable sales growth later this year.”