World Fabric Output Grows; Yarn/Fabric Stocks, Orders Fall

The latest State of Trade Report from the Switzerland-based International Textile
Manufacturers Federation (ITMF) reveals that  first-quarter (Q1) 2007 global fabric production
grew slightly, while yarn output remained stable. At the same time, global yarn and fabric
inventories retreated from the high levels reported for the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2006. Yarn and
fabric orders also were lower compared with the previous quarter.

Q1 2007 fabric output rose by 1 percent over Q4 2006, with 2- and 1.9-percent
increases reported in Asia and South America, respectively, and a 1.8-percent decline in
Europe.  Year-on-year, output rose by 2.6 percent, reflecting a 16.7-percent increase in Asia
balanced against 5.6-, 8.3- and 31.3-percent drops in Europe, South America and North America,

Yarn production for the quarter rose by 0.8 percent in Asia, and declined by 1.1 and
5.2 percent, respectively, in North and South America. On an annual basis, output was 0.4-percent
lower, with substantial respective reductions of 28.6 and 13.5 percent in North and South America,
and 0.4- and 7.4-percent gains in Europe and Asia.

Q1 2007 yarn inventories were 1.3-percent lower than in Q4 2006, and year-on-year
rose by 12.9 percent. ITMF reported a Q1 2007 gain of 15 percent in South America weighing against
losses of 3.1 and 0.1 percent in Asia and Europe, respectively. Year-on-year gains included 13.7
percent in South America and 18.7 percent in Asia, and a 3.7-percent decline in Europe.

Fabric stocks were down significantly — 14.6 percent for the quarter and 23.5
percent year-on-year, with drops recorded in all regions. Europe’s reductions of  22.6 percent
for the quarter and 42.2 percent on an annual basis reflected a continued downward correction in

Yarn order declines were reported in Europe and Brazil both for Q1 2007 — 0.7 and
6.5 percent, respectively — and on an annual basis — 0.8 and 20 percent, respectively. Fabric
orders in Europe inched up by 0.1 percent for the quarter and were 0.4 percent lower on an annual
basis; while in Brazil they declined by 3.2 percent for the quarter and 16.1 percent

November/December 2007