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PC Sales Continue Benefiting From COVID-19 Pandemic-Led Demand

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According to the latest data compiled by two independent research firms — Gartner Inc. (IT - Free Report) and International Data Corporation (“IDC”) — the worldwide PC sales continued its growth momentum for the second consecutive quarter.

Per the preliminary data released by Gartner, PC shipments in the third quarter were up 3.6% year over year to 71.4 million units. The upswing was also significantly higher than growth of 2.8% registered during the second quarter.

Per the data compiled by IDC, PC sales were up 14.6% year over year to 81.3 million units during the September-end quarter. This year-over-year increase also came in higher than the previous quarter’s growth rate of 11.2%.

Although the firms have reported different figures, both share a similar opinion that the year-over-year improvement was mainly driven by increased demand and improvement in the supply chain.

Computer - Mini computers Industry 5YR % Return Computer - Mini computers Industry 5YR % Return

Computer - Mini computers Industry 5YR % Return

Work-and-Learn-From-Home Fuels PC Demand

Lockdown measures to contain the spread of coronavirus have been stoking demand for PCs. IDC stated that as people are forced to work and learn from homes owing to the social-distancing restrictions, PC has taken the center stage for consumers’ tech portfolio.

Gartner also has a similar view. The research firm stated that the demand for PCs was driven by several factors, including the need for online education, remote working, and consumer entertainment.

Improving Supply Chain

Both research firms agreed that the supply-chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have been largely resolved. However, continued shortages of key components, including processors and panels, resulted in missed opportunities for many PC manufacturers.

Linn Huang, research vice president, Devices and Displays at IDC said, "The PC industry rode into the third quarter with a sizeable backlog of unfulfilled orders." He further added that "it appears the quarter will end under the same auspices. Given that the shortages have been due more to a shortfall of business planning than a technical glitch, we do not anticipate a sudden surge in capacity. Consequently, this backlog will likely carry into 2021."

Top Vendors

Per the data compiled by IDC, all top PC manufacturers except foo Dell Technologies (DELL - Free Report) witnessed year-over-year increases in shipments. During the July-September quarter, Lenovo (LNVGY - Free Report) surpassed HP (HPQ - Free Report) , securing the top vendor position, with a market share of 23.7%.

HP slipped to the second position, with a market share of 23%. Dell, Apple (AAPL - Free Report) and Acer Group hold the next three positions, with a respective market share of 14.8%, 8.5%, and 7.4%.

Gartner report also shared a similar view on the top five vendors. Nevertheless, the market share percentage was somewhat different from the IDC report. According to Gartner, Lenovo still holds the top spot with a 25.7% market share, followed by HP’s 21.6%. The next three positions are held by Dell, Apple and Acer Group, with a market share of 15.2%, 7.7%, and 7.1%, respectively.

While Lenovo carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy), HP, Dell, and Apple have a Zacks Rank of 3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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