Survey Shows Limited Recovery For Global PC Sales

By Agence France-Presse Global sales of personal computers are expected to show only modest gains this year, according to a newly revised forecast from market research group International Data Corp. IDC said its outlook for 2003 sales calls for 6.3% growth. It was the second downward revision for the forecast in the past six months for the Framingham, Mass.-based firm, which in March predicted 6.9% growth, and 8% growth three months earlier. "PC demand remains limited despite improvements from last year," said Loren Loverde, director of IDC's quarterly PC Tracker. "We've seen only limited recovery in business shipments while consumer growth has slowed in recent quarters and public sector shipments are falling. Growing consumer and business confidence as well as system replacements will boost growth in the second half of the year, but we won't see double digit growth until 2004." IDC said worldwide PC shipments reached almost 35 million units in the first quarter of 2003 with a value of $42.2 billion, up 3% from the same period a year ago. Total shipments for 2003 are now expected to reach 145.2 million, followed by growth of 10.3% in 2004, IDC said. But lower prices will mean the value of sales will be falling this year, and will increase just marginally in 2004, the company said. Total shipment value is expected to decline 2.4% in 2003 to $169 billion, followed by growth of 3.5% in 2004. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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