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NAPL: Business Upturn Continues For Commercial Printers

Thursday, January 08, 2004

Press release from the issuing company

PARAMUS, N.J., JANUARY 7, 2004 – The upturn that started for commercial printers in the summer of 2003 continued through fall. The National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL) Printing Business Index (PBI) equaled 56.1 in November, marking the fifth consecutive month this comprehensive indicator exceeded the critical 50.0 mark. Twice as many members of the 300+ member NAPL Printing Business Panel reported that business picked up in November as report business slowed down. For the third consecutive month, more printers reported an increase in work-on-hand than reported a decrease. The economic analysis comes from NAPL’s Printing Economic Research Center (PERC), which produces research and publications. At the same time, print prices remained under intense pressure, resulting in a 4.2% drop in sales in October for the Printing Business Panel and an overall projected sales decline for 2003. That trend should be reversed this year, according to Andrew Paparozzi, NAPL’s vice president and chief economist, who projects print sales will grow as much as 4.1% in 2004. “The sales growth we’ll see this year represents the first increase since 2000,” says Paparozzi. He notes, however, that “not all companies will benefit equally from the upturn. The companies that will benefit the most will be those that are well prepared for the structural changes redefining our product markets. Those structural changes are profound and far-reaching, ranging from the growing demand for value-added services to competition from the Internet. The printers who develop new business models to respond to those opportunities will be the ones that survive and thrive.”




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