FRANKFURT -- German region PCB fabricators reported sales rose 13.6% year-over-year in March.

Orders rose 23.5% from a year ago, reported ZVEI-Fachverband PCB and Electronic Systems.

Sales for the quarter were up 8% over the previous year, said ZVEI. Orders were up 23.7% than in 2016.

Both sales and orders are at their highest marks in 15 years.

The main reason for the increase was the scarcity of copper foil, which has resulted in late or unfilled deliveries from Asia.

The book-to-bill ratio rose 80 basis points to 1.14. A ratio of 1.14 means that for every 100 euros worth of boards shipped 114 euros worth were ordered.

The number of employees in the industry rose 1.2% compared to February, and was 5.6% higher than in the first quarter 2016.

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