Recession trips up circuit breaker market

Study finds market will decline as recovery lags


It's forecast to be a tough year for the low voltage products market in North America. According to IMS Research ( ) the market for molded case (MCCB) and power circuit breakers is expected to decline from $1.163.6B in 2008 to $1.035.6B in 2009, a contraction of 11%. The long term outlook is for the market to return to growth in the region of 3% per year. However, the period of recovery is expected to be prolonged.
While 2009 is already proving to be a difficult year for circuit breaker suppliers, the MCCB and power breaker markets are affected differently by the downturn. The collapse in the construction industry began in 2007 over a year before that of industrial production. This had the greater impact on the MCCB market leading to a drop in this market, beginning in 2007. However, recovery in the construction industry, particularly in areas such as commercial buildings, is expected to lead to an upturn in the MCCB market in 2010.
The power breaker market has lagged the MCCB market, with growth remaining positive in 2008, buoyed by the greater proportion of sales into heavy industry, such as oil and mining. These industries were more resistant to the onset of the downturn. However, recovery of the market is also lagging that of the general economy and growth is forecast to be negative through 2010, although it is expected to return to around 3% by 2012.


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