Yes… You have probably asked this multiple times in the last six months or so. PCB prices are on the rise and it does not seem to slow down and one of the main reasons is copper.
But why is that?
Copper is in very high demand right now due to a couple of key factors.
It is because of the pandemic, you might think, but copper extraction is almost fully autonomous, so how can there be short supply? It is simply because of the high demand in the electronics industry and the supply just cannot keep up.
Different articles state, it is primarily the automotive industry where more and more of the car companies are buying all components & need copper for PCB’s and lithium batteries. But it is not only cars. The production of electronics all around is on an all-time high.
A lot of different electronic equipment are putting high pressure in the market. Since everyone is staying at home, they need either work PC’s (or gaming PC’s), they need more TV’s or bigger and newer TV’s. Perhaps the latest gaming consoles to go with that. The demand for smart phones is not slowing down either. It is safe to say that it has never been better for electronics worldwide. Unfortunately, high demand cause prices to increase.
Keep in mind: The situation can also be a good reason for ramping up prices to increase a supplier’s personal gain, so be careful. We recommend that now, more than ever, you need to benchmark your current suppliers and see if they are increasing cost a proportional amount to the increase in copper prices or if they are using this uncertainty to charge you too much.