LONDON – The three-month average of sales [billings] of chip making equipment were down considerably on the same period a year before for both North American and Japanese manufacturers but a positive book-to-bill in both regions means the outlook is better for them.
North America-based manufacturers of semiconductor equipment posted $1.07 billion in orders worldwide in February 2013 on a three-month average basis and a book-to-bill ratio of 1.10, according trade association SEMI.
A book-to-bill of 1.10 means that $110 worth of orders came in for every $100 of product billed for the month. The equivalent figure for Japan-based equipment makers was higher at 1.17.
However, the North American bookings figure of $1.07 billion for February is 0.2 percent lower than the three-month average January 2013 level of $1.08 billion, and is 19.7 percent lower than the February 2012 order level of $1.34 billion.
The three-month average of worldwide billings in February 2013 was $975.3 million, 0.8 percent higher than the final January 2013 level of $968.0 million, and 26.3 percent lower than the February 2012 billings level of $1.32 billion.
"We expect modest investment by semiconductor makers in the first half of the year with foundry and advanced packaging technology among the near-term spending drivers," said Denny McGuirk, president and CEO of SEMI, in a statment.
On the same three-month averaged basis Japanese manufacturers of semiconductor equipment posted orders worth 79,499 million yen (about $840 million), up 7.0 percent on the January 2013 level of 74,316 million yen (about $785 million) and down 20.3 percent on the February 2012 bookings level of 99,797 million yen (about .$1,053 million).
The Japan three-month average of worldwide billings in February 2013 was 68,231 million yen (about $720 million), up 8.3 percent up on the final January 2013 level of 62,978 million yen (about $665 million) and 33.0 percent down on the February 2012 billings level of 101,787 million yen (about $1,074 million).
The book-to-bill ratio swung above unity at the turn of the year in North America and in December 2012 in Japan.
Click on image to enlarge.
Bookings, billings (in millions of dollars) and book-to-bill ratios for North American chip making equipment manufacturers. Source: SEMI.
Click on image to enlarge.
Bookings, billings (in millions of yen) and book-to-bill ratios for Japan-based chip making equipment manufacturers. Source: SEAJ.
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