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PC Shipments May Decline 6.1% in 2014, Researcher IDC Forecasts

March 4 (Bloomberg) -- Worldwide personal-computer shipments may decline by a steeper-than-forecast 6.1 percent this year as demand weakens in emerging markets, researcher IDC said.

PC unit sales are projected to fall for a third straight year to 295.9 million from 315.1 million in 2013, IDC said today in a statement. The researcher, which in January predicted a 3.8 percent drop in 2014 and growth of less than 1 percent in 2015, now estimates the declines will persist through 2018.

Competition from devices such as smartphones and tablets has eroded sales of PCs in recent years. Growth in Asia, which had been a bright spot, is now being held back by a dimmer economic outlook and political changes, IDC said. Last year, global PC shipments dropped by 9.8 percent, led by an 11.3 percent decline in emerging markets, the researcher said.

“Emerging markets used to be a core driver of the PC market,” said Loren Loverde, an analyst at Framingham, Massachusetts-based IDC, in the statement. “At the moment, however, we’re seeing emerging regions more affected by a weak economic environment as well as significant shifts in technology buying priorities.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Jillian Ward in San Francisco at jward56@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Pui-Wing Tam at ptam13@bloomberg.net

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