April sales were larger than first reported for U.S. electronics and computer manufacturers, while sales for all durable goods manufacturers jumped 3.7% from an upward revised March total.
This was expected after earlier strong April reports for retail sales, employment and industrial production.
Computer & peripherals manufacturers boosted sales 2.9%, telecom equipment suppliers had a 2.6% gain and component manufacturers had a 2.1% increase. No information is available for semiconductors because of continued data reporting problems with some major manufacturers. However, the Semiconductor Industry Association reported a 3.1% worldwide rise in April semiconductor sales.
Motor vehicle shipments jumped 12% in April while all other electronic component end markets averaged negligible growth for the sixth consecutive month.
Inventories held by computer manufacturers fell 2.1% while telecom equipment and components manufacturers keep inventories steady. Surprisingly, telecom inventories, relative to sales, are nearly back to the minimum level reached in mid-2000. But computer manufacturers still have about a week too much inventory and component manufactures are sitting on about three weeks more inventory than during their best performance two years ago.