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A business consultancy, based in London, England, John Sacks' JSA Consultancy Services provides expert, in-depth, information advice and guidance as to how to exploit successfully the office furniture and interiors markets in Europe, North America, Australasia and Japan.

U.S. office furniture shipments, orders down in August

Thursday 2 October 2008

NEW YORK, (Reuters) - U.S. office furniture shipments fell 4 percent in August to $995 million, tipping shipments into negative territory year-to-date and heralding steeper demand declines ahead, a trade group said on Friday.
The Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association said August orders fell 1 percent to $970 million compared with a year earlier.
Also, the trade group said it expects full-year orders and shipments to fall 2.4 percent and 3.9 percent, respectively. For 2009, BIFMA is projecting a drop in both orders and shipments of slightly more than 10 percent.
So far this year orders are flat. Shipments are down 1 percent.
Office furniture demand has weakened steadily over the past several months after mid-to-high single-digit growth in 2006 and mid-single-digit growth in 2007, Raymond James analyst Budd Bugatch wrote in a note to clients.
\"Historically, the primary drivers of industry demand include business confidence, corporate profits, white-collar employment, new office construction, and office vacancy rates,\" Bugatch wrote. \"These indicators are either negative or softening.\"

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