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August Printer Confidence Index: Guarded Optimism Prevails

Press release from the issuing company

---- Combined with the Print Buyer Pulse Index, printers and print buyers both have a cautious sentiment and outlook according to data collected in August. August 26, 2002 - WhatTheyThink.com and CAP Ventures have released the results of the Printer Confidence Index. The data is compiled each month from printers throughout the United States. The index provides industry executives with real-time analysis of PRINT DEMAND and CAPITAL SPENDING expectations. In August, for the second consecutive month, more than half of the print providers (52.2%) indicated their local market conditions are “starting or continuing to decline”. The research suggests that the steady improvement throughout the spring in overall market sentiment has given way to negative conditions for the summer. Readers should note there has been a steady increase in negative market sentiment since April when only 35.2% of print providers cited declining market conditions. Most regions reported a similar level of negative sentiment ranging from a high in the Northeast (58.6%) to a low in South (47.4%). Throughout the year the South has consistently been reporting the best conditions. Despite the relatively high negative market sentiment there was an increase in the percentage of printers that expect their current month business (August) to grow compared with last months (July). In August 39.5% of printers expect their business to grow over the preceding month, compared with July when only 30.5% of printers expected their business to grow over the preceding month. This jump is consistent with the Print Buyer Pulse Index (see companion survey), and can likely be explained by seasonal trends associated with lower print volumes during the summer months. --------- Premium Access members can view the charts, graphs, demographics and complete comparisons with previous months. The Index tracks print demand last month, this month and the coming six months. The Index also examines past, present and future spending plans on capital equipment like: - Prepress - Offset & Conventional Presses - Color Copiers & Printers - High Speed Digital Color - High Speed Digital B&W - Wide Format Printers - Bindery Equipment - Print Management Software The data can be accessed by Premium Access members at www.whattheythink.com