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Challenging Market Environment in 2015

Date: 2015-11-18
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Challenging Market Environment in 2015

The market for aluminum electrolytic capacitors has been challenging during the past year, with declining sales to the computer and consumer AV markets, offset by increased demand from the automotive, wireless base station, robotic, machine tool and renewable energy segments. This disparity in demand is causing a shift in global consumption of aluminum electrolytic capacitors based on configuration, with increases in demand for axial leaded designs for automotive and snap-mount and screw terminal designs for industrial and renewable energy end-use markets. However we note stagnation or weakness in the larger markets for radial leaded and vertical chip capacitors consumed in consumer audio and video imaging equipment and computer and computer peripherals.

Also, a large impact on the market over the past year has been the currency exchange rates which favor Japanese manufactured aluminum electrolytic capacitors because of the weakened yen. Japanese manufactured aluminum electrolytic capacitors were extremely cost effective in overseas sales where the weakened yen made them extremely competitive against locally manufactured products. Therefore we saw sharp increases in revenues at such companies as Nippon Chemi-Con and Nichicon in yen, but this was at the expense of the rest of the world. Also, regardless of the weakened yen, the Japanese consumption tax caused a decline in the home market of Japan. So globally, and when measured in U.S. dollars, the global market for aluminum capacitors actually has declined slightly, with the overall trend and outlook remaining muted due to the uncertainty of the yen valuation going forward (however it should be noted that in October of 2015 that the yen has exhibited early signs of strengthening against the US dollar).

Aluminum Electrolytic Capacitor markets are at a low point because the end-use markets into which the products are being sold are undergoing significant change and the weak yen is diminishing the global market of value.

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