Total reported sales for all relay categories in North America for the first quarter of 2015 were 4% lower than reported in the previous quarter and up 1% the same quarter of 2014. Sales units for Q1 2015 came in less than 1% above Q4 and 2% less than Q1 of 2014.

The total booking dollars reported for all relay categories in North America for Q1 2015 ran 4% less than the Q4, and down over 9% Q1 2014. The fourth quarter’s book-to-bill ratio for dollars was 0.891. Booking units in Q1 2015 were 8% below the Q4. The second quarter’s book-to-bill ratio for units was 0.876.

In the first quarter of 2015 sales were down in dollars for EMRs and SSRs. Units were unchanged for mechanicals and up for solid state. ASPs were down for both. In total dollars decreased 4%, units were almost unchanged, and the ASP down 5%. When compared to the first quarter of last year EMRs were up in dollars and the opposite for SSRs. Units and ASPs were also mixed. In total dollars increased 1% and units down 2% higher with an ASP gain of 3%.

Sales Growth by Relay Category

  Q1 Versus Q4 CY 2014 Q1 2015 Versus Q1 2014
Category Dollars Units ASP Dollars Units ASP
Electro-mechanical -4.6% 0.0% -4.7% 3.0% -2.4% 5.5%
Solid State -2.3% 10.1% -11.3% -6.7% 4.2% -10.5%
Total -4.2% 0.5% -4.7% 0.7% -2.0% 2.8%

Booking dollars and units moved lower in Q1 compared to Q4 for EMRs and SSRs improved. In total booking dollars fell 4% and units decreased 7% with a 4% ABP increase. The comparison to Q1 of 2014 shows similar but stronger results. All in, dollars dropped nearly 10% with units almost 17% lower. The ABP for EMRs rose about 7% while SSRs were down 7%. 

Bookings Growth by Relay Category

  Q1 Versus Q4 CY 2014 Q1 2015 Versus Q1 2014
Category Dollars Units ABP Dollars Units ABP
Electro-mechanical -6.3% -8.2% 2.0% -12.7% -18.0% 6.5%
Solid State 4.6% 0.9% 3.8% 2.5% 10.7% -7.4%
Total -3.9% -7.7% 4.1% -9.5% -16.8% 8.8%

The graph below shows total quarterly indexed sales and bookings in dollars and units for the reported data. Sales dollars and units started a slide in Q2 of 2013 and changed direction in the first quarter of the next year. This rise reversed at end of 2014 and last quarter. In 2013 booking dollars and units fell until the last quarter, recovered further through Q2 of 2014. In Q3 of 2014 bookings fell sharply and hit two year lows in Q1 of this year.

The overall indexed selling prices were higher with dips occurring in the first quarter of each year. Booking prices have also trended upward over the period with more fluctuation. The indexed booking price has been below the selling price for the period.

Book-to-bill dollars and units trended up to Q1 of 2013, moved down the next two quarters, then recovered some through Q2 of 2014, and dropped in Q3 of last year. The ratio of average booking to selling prices has generally moved lower until Q1 of last year when the trend changed upward. It then rose to hit 1.0 in Q3, fell in Q4, and moved above 1.0 in the last quarter.

Michael Schwert


Michael Schwert

Michael is the founder of Cumulus, Inc. He has more than 30 years of marketing and sales as well as design experience in the electronic and electrical component industry. Prior to founding Cumulus, he was Director of Marketing for Cherry Electrical Products and held other marketing management positions with Panduit, BRK Electronics, and Ideal Industries.

Cumulus provides market information and consulting services for the global electronic components industry. The company offers three publications: Switch Tracks, a quarterly report with market information on component switches; the Relay Report, a quarterly report with market information on component relays; and Market Notes, a monthly report on sales, bookings, and business conditions in the relay and switch market. Cumulus also manages projects that help leading global suppliers in the relay and switch industry to develop new products and reach new markets.

Schwert provides MarketEYE with monthly articles that include timely and accurate market information for the electromechanical component sector of the electronics industry.

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