These payments will rise another 6.4% in 2007 to reach $1.4 billion, according to consulting and research firm CIMdata, Ann Arbor, Mich. If its prediction is right, this will be the fourth straight year with growth of 6% or more.

The NC market has steadily improved along with global economies, says CIMdata. Machine-tool sales, manufacturing output, and the overall Product Lifecycle Market (PLM), of which CAM is a component, have shown strong growth. And growth in all these areas affects CAM software purchases.