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European PC shipments grew 9.9 per cent for the third quarter - hampered by the weak Euro and Windows 2000.

Shipments reached 8.1 million for the period, but growth was slower than the long-term average - of around 15 per cent, according to Dataquest. This was the third consecutive quarter of single digit growth.

Dataquest blamed two factors: the reluctance of businesses to place big PC orders due to the weak Euro, which made computers expensive. And Windows 2000 - Dataquest said PC sales growth would remain slow until demand for the operating system took off. This is expected to happen in Q4, with the effects to kick in on sales at the start of 2001.

Corporate customer orders increased just 6.1 per cent over the previous year - or 72 per cent of total sales. European consumer demand was buoyant - up 21.2 per cent.

Compaq remained Europe's top PC maker, with shipments up two per cent, followed by Fujitsu Siemens, which saw sales drop seven per cent. Dell, number three in the area and one of the companies recently griping about slow sales in Europe, saw two per cent growth.

IBM and Hewlett-Packard didn't seem to suffer, with 21.9 and 32.1 per cent growth respectively.

Last month Dell warned that Q3 sales would be three per cent less than expected because Europeans weren't buying enough of its products. Other manufacturers, including Intel and 3dfx, have also blamed the soft Euro PC market for their financial woes in the quarter. ®

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