IC equipment book-to-bill ratio climbs for a third month

By Lisa Wang  /  Staff reporter

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 - Page 14

The book-to-bill ratio for North America-based semiconductor equipment manufacturers increased for a third straight month last month, bolstered by continuing investments by the world’s top chipmakers, SEMI said yesterday.

The book-to-bill ratio climbed to 1.14 last month, from 1.1 in February, indicating demand for semiconductor equipment continued to improve, SEMI said. The figure marked the highest level in 31 months.

The three-month average of worldwide billings rose 2.8 percent to US$1 billion last month, compared with US$974.7 million in October, according to SEMI’s tallies. That was a 22.2 percent annual decline from US$1.29 billion in the same period last year.

The three-month average of worldwide bookings increased 5.9 percent to US$1.14 billion last month from US$1.07 billion in the prior month. The figure represented an annual contraction of 21.3 percent from US$1.45 billion in the same period last year.

“Continued improvement in three-month average bookings for new semiconductor manufacturing equipment is reflected in the March figures, which indicate a 23 percent improvement over the prior quarter,” SEMI president and CEO Denny McGuirk said in a statement.

“While the overall expansion of new manufacturing capacity remains muted, we see continued investment in technology upgrades by the world’s chip makers,” he said.

A book-to-bill of 1.14 means that US$114 worth of orders were received for every US$100 of product billed for the month.