Market Watch

Market Watch


Freedonia Forecasts Growth in Dye, Organic Pigment Markets

The U.S. market for dyes and organic pigments is expected to increase nearly 3 percent per year to $3.1 billion in 2005, according to Dyes and Organic Pigments, a new study from The Freedonia Group, a Cleveland, OH-based industrial market research firm.

Demand for organic pigments is expected to grow 5.5 percent per annum to $1.8 billion in 2005, driven by above-average gains in printing, inks, paints and coatings and plastics. While development of high performance and other specialty pigments for water-based inks, powder coatings and radiation-curable inks and coatings will spur value gains, volume advances will be restrained by the lofty prices of these specialty pigments. Global overcapacity and a soft pricing environment for all but high performance products will also limit gains.

Demand for dyes is forecast to decline slightly, restrained by lackluster growth in the large textile market and a weak pricing environment due to global overcapacity and fierce competition from low-cost imports.

Dyes and Organic Pigments is available for $3,700. For more information, contact The Freedonia Group at (440) 684-9600; fax: (440) 646-0484; or e-mail

PIA 2001 Ratios Reveals Steady Printer Profit Margins

The Printing Industries of Americas’ (PIA), Inc.’s 2001 edition of PIA Ratios reveals the overall graphic arts industry reacted accordingly to economic conditions, but that as a whole, the industry witnessed small but steady profit margins.

“The printing industry is very sensitive to the pace of the general economy and advertising spending,” said Dr. Ronnie Davis, PIA’s chief economist. “The slowdown toward the end of the year in 2000 was just enough to cause the profit dip. The pace of U.S. economic growth fell to its lowest level since 1993 during the last quarter of 2000 and first quarter of 2001.

“Print markets reacted by registering their slowest growth pace since the second quarter of 1991,” Dr. Davis continued. “The good news is that profit leaders’ financial performance held up very well with profit on sales rates remaining above 10 percent for the third year in a row. This statistic demonstrates that opportunities still exist in the printing industry for well managed printers to achieve enviable returns, even in difficult times.

“Overall, participating printers spent 25.4 percent of their sales on factory payroll and 36.3 percent on materials,” Dr. Davis added.

Printing and publishing is the leading U.S. manufacturing industry in terms of establishments, with more than 47,000. It ranks fourth in the number of employees and seventh in terms of shipments.

Approximately 900 printers, prepress companies and trade binders participated in the survey. Information on a value added and sales basis is provided on detailed income and expense line items, balance sheet data, and various other ratios for all firms and for profit leaders, which are firms in the top 25 percent of profitability.

Printers participating in the survey averaged 3.07 percent before-tax profit margin of sales compared to the previous year’s mark of 3.23 percent. That level marks the second year in a row that overall industry profit rates declined after rising in 1997, 1998 and 1999. The industry leaders reported a 10.5 percent before-tax profit in sales.

For more information, contact the PIA and Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF) bookstore at (800) 662-3916 or visit the web at