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Getting to Know Your Designer
In this issue, we examine how fabs work with their design customers, educating them on the critical elements of fabrication needed to be successful, as well as the many tradeoffs involved. How well do you really know your customer? What makes for a closer, more synchronized working relationship?
In this issue, the biggest names in PCB manufacturing share their economic outlook for the upcoming year and beyond. As you will see, they were all bullish on our industry, but there was some apprehension as well. No one wants to get burned by another the supply chain disruption.
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North American PCB Industry Sales up 4.5 Percent in DecemberJanuary 27, 2021 | IPC
Estimated reading time: 1 minute
IPC announced the December 2020 findings from its North American Printed Circuit Board (PCB) Statistical Program. The book-to-bill ratio stands at 1.05.
Total North American PCB shipments in December 2020 were up 4.5 percent compared to the same month last year. Compared to the preceding month, December shipments rose 9.8 percent.
PCB bookings in December rose 9.2 percent year-over-year and increased 9.1 percent from the previous month.
“PCB orders and shipments ended 2020 on a positive note. Order flow outpaced shipments for the second consecutive month. For the year, orders were up 4.5 percent while shipments increased 2.4 percent,” said Shawn DuBravac, IPC’s chief economist. “Recent reports of spot semiconductor shortages might curtail PCB orders in the near-term, but demand continues to look solid.”
Detailed Data Available
Companies that participate in IPC’s North American PCB Statistical Program have access to detailed findings on rigid PCB and flexible circuit sales and orders, including separate rigid and flex book-to-bill ratios, growth trends by product types and company size tiers, demand for prototypes, sales growth to military and medical markets, and other timely data.
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 twelve 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 by the end of each month.
ViTrox, which aims to be the world’s most trusted technology company, is thrilled to announce its return to IPC APEX 2024, the largest electronics manufacturing event in North America. ViTrox eagerly invites visitors to explore our offerings at Booth #2642, Anaheim Convention Center, LA, from April 9th to 11th. During this time, we will unveil a series of cutting-edge inspection solutions poised to revolutionize manufacturing production lines.
You have an excellent idea for a new standard in the electronics manufacturing industry. How do you turn that idea into a reality? It’s simple: You submit a PIN to the TAEC. Now, what does that even mean? To develop a new standard, you need the help of the IPC Technical Activities Executive Committee (TAEC) Global. Ideas for new IPC standards are submitted via Project Identification Notification (PIN) to TAEC Global, which conducts an initial review. The PIN is then sent to the general TAEC standards development oversight committee for review and approval. Now, how do they review it and who comprises the committee?
When high school students face an upcoming test, they may experience a mix of dread and excitement, depending on the source material and how well they’ve prepared. Similarly, professionals sitting for a certification exam to test their knowledge of IPC standards may feel a whirlwind of emotions. However, these aren't just any exams; they’re meant for operators, engineers, and managers building the critical infrastructure of our world’s most essential electronics systems.
On the cusp of another IPC APEX EXPO, we focus on how bare board fabricators can maximize their time and investment at the show. We visited with Matt Kelly, IPC chief technologist, and Julia Gumminger, IPC professional development and events manager, as well as Udo Welzel and Stanton Rak, the chairs of the technical program committee, to discuss the technical depth and breadth that the 2024 show will bring to fabricators and professionals all along the supply chain.
Each quarter, IPC releases a list of standards that are new or have been updated. To view a complete list of newly published standards and standards revisions, translations, proposed standards for ballot, final drafts for industry review, working drafts, and project approvals, visit ipc.org/status.