S&P: PC industry growth being driven by non-U.S. markets; ‘Apple’s prospects are the brightest’

Apple StoreAs the computer hardware industry continues to grow, Standard & Poor’s Equity Research Services sees it as a tale of two markets — the U.S. and non-U.S. Consumer. Price competition and a slowdown in commercial orders, driven by middling corporate sales, has led to decreased growth from the U.S. computer hardware industry. At the same time, Asia and Europe have experienced rising sales of PC units, particularly for notebooks, as well as servers. These and other findings are available in a semi-annual report titled Computers: Hardware Industry Survey (US$695), published by Standard & Poor’s, a leading provider of financial market intelligence.

While the worldwide personal computer industry enjoyed a fourth consecutive year of growth in 2006, investors should note that PC shipments in the U.S. increased a lackluster 3%, compared to hearty growth of an estimated 17.6% in per unit shipments in the Asia-Pacific region and even more robust 22.2% growth in Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Middle East. Standard & Poor’s Equity Research sees the overall growth continuing for a fifth year in 2007 with 11% total unit growth.

“General industry data suggest that growth has been strong for the PC industry, but this is somewhat misleading,” noted Scott Kessler, Technology Sector Group Head at Standard & Poor’s Equity Research, in the press release. “International markets are now critical to growth. Hewlett-Packard and Acer benefited from gains in Europe, the Middle East and Asia (EMEA), and Lenovo added market share in Asia-Pacific, while Dell, which has extensive U.S. market exposure, experienced a decline in units. We still see our 11% growth target as attainable, but investors should recognize that a number of variables, such as a decelerating global economy, sluggish enterprise spending, high energy prices and a continued housing market slump, could have a negative impact.”

New operating systems from Microsoft Corp. (Vista) and Apple Inc. (Leopard), along with further overseas development and the move towards notebook computers, will likely stimulate PC industry demand. Standard & Poor’s Equity Research believes that prospects for Apple, which is ranked “Strong Buy” (5-STARS out of 5), are the brightest. The company’s Macintosh line of PCs is benefiting from multiple factors, including increased processing power from a switch to Intel-based chips, and its “boot camp” feature, which allows users to work in a Microsoft Windows-based environment.

Source: http://www.equityresearch.standardandpoors.com/


  1. Boy, more and more, I see how these so called analysists really have NO CLUE. They just puff up their chests, and tell us anything they wish.

    Apple growing cause of boot camp and intell chips. YEP, that is the only reason. I think they must be reading Dvorak. ???


  2. Well, unfortunately, Intel chips and Bootcamp ARE important reasons for the Mac’s recent growth. I see that in my own company. However, it s*cks that those are the only two reasons cited in this “report,” because they’re obviously not the only reasons.

  3. He forgot about the iPod halo-effect, the beautiful design, true plug-in-play, one OS working on G3, G4, G5, and Intel, and most of all, the fact that the sheep are getting smarter and fed up with constant, predictable Win$in hassles.

  4. I’d like Apple to emphasize OS X’s multilingual abilities. I know that if you wanted Chinese input in XP you can add that but for the entire OS to have Chinese dialogs, menus, etc., you needed to install Chinese XP =(

  5. Give Standards and Poors a break on this will ya? This report is about a specific market segment, that of PC sales. The inclusion of the iPod sales prospects and iPhone prospects are mostly irrelevant, unless you mention them as catalysts for Macintosh growth. Besides I’m sure the report mentions this point as well, as these tend to be quite thorough.

    MDN word: OLD as in, “My old lady ain’t what she used to be.”

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.