Furniture Today's Economic Forecast for 2013

Originally published in the January 14, 2013 issue of Furniture Today

U.S. furniture and bedding sales will grow a little more slowly this year as economic growth tapers off and unemployment remains stubbornly high, according to Furniture/Today's new consensus forecast. Consumer spending on furniture and bedding, a broad measure of retail activity, is projected to increase 4.3% this year to $87.8 billion, after growing 5.1% in 2012.

While 2013 is expected to be the industry's fourth year of growth in a row, business hasn't quite recovered to the level of the peak years in 2006 and 2007, when spending hit $90.9 billion. The industry is likely to continue its slow recovery from the Great Recession.

One bright spot is expected to be housing, with housing starts projected to advance nearly 10% to 945,000 not a record pace by any means, but a sign of health.

This exclusive report includes 2012 estimates and 2013 projections for Consumer spending on furniture and bedding; Housing starts; Existing home sales; New home sales; Mortgage rates; Real gross domestic product; Consumer price index; Unemployment; Personal disposable income and Prime interest rates. Data for the forecast came from Budd Bugatch, Raymond James; Jerry Epperson, Mann, Armistead & Epperson; Ken Smith, Smith Leonard; Association for Financial Professionals; Bank of America Merrill Lynch; Fannie Mae Economics and Mortgage Market Analysis; Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago; Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, The Livingston Survey; Federal Reserve; Freddie Mac; Mortgage Bankers Association; National Association of Home Builders; National Association of Realtors; RBC; TD Economics; The Conference Board; PNC Financial Services Group; University of Michigan, Research Seminar in Quantitative Economics (RSQE); U.S. Census Bureau; U.S. Department of Commerce; Bureau of Economic Analysis; Bureau of Labor Statistics; Wall Street Journal and Wells Fargo.

Furniture/Today's 2013 Economic Forecast was compiled by Furniture/Today's market research team, led by Dana French, Director of Research and Stephanie Nickell, Research Analyst.

*3 pages*

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Furniture Today's Economic Forecast for 2013
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