Welcome to JSA Consultancy Services

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.

US Office Furniture Orders, Shipments Tumble in January

Wednesday 4 March 2009

The US office furniture industry\'s downturn projected for 2009 is worsening and could exceed the worst of the volume declines experienced early this decade.

An updated outlook from the Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association sees industrywide shipments declining 19.3 percent this year to $9.0 billion, a one-year loss of more than $2 billion dollars in business.

The outlook, released this week, represents a significant downgrade from the 11.6 percent shipment decline previously forecast three months ago.

If it pans out, the 2009 decline will surpass the 19.0 percent drop-off in business experienced in 2002, the height of an unprecedented, three-year downturn for the office furniture industry that saw $4.7 billion in shipments disappear between 2001 and 2003, or a 35.9 percent volume decline.

The updated outlook comes as the nation\'s economy is stuck in recession, leading to reduced white-collar employment, capital spending, corporate profits and new office construction and occupancy rates -- all of which are key drivers for the industry.

The steep decline now forecast for 2009 comes after a 2.3 percent decline in 2008 that dropped shipments from $11.4 billion to $11.1 billion.


Tom ReardonDespite the nation\'s sluggish economy, shipments during much of the year were running flat. That changed when the financial and stock market meltdown hit in the fall, BIFMA Executive Director Tom Reardon said.

Shipments declined 6.7 percent alone in the fourth quarter, generating the overall 2.3 percent annual decline.

\"They were holding right in there,\" Reardon said.

Come October, \"things hit pretty hard\" and a contraction in business has continued ever since, leading officer furniture makers to quickly curtail production and cut jobs.

\"It\'s painful but obviously necessary,\" Reardon said of the action companies are making.

If there\'s any \"bright spot\" in the updated outlook, it\'s the comparatively small 1.1 percent decline forecast for 2010 and Global Insight\'s expectation that shipments will begin moving upward again in the latter half of 2010, Reardon said.

\"When you can see the light at the end of the tunnel, it is a little comforting,\" he said. \"It appears, at least, that right now, we can see the recovery.\"

Comerica Inc. senior economist Dana Jacobson, in a recent U.S. economic outlook, forecast Real GDP of negative 5.0 percent for the first quarter, then subsequent declines of 3.0 percent in the second quarter and 0.5 percent in the third.

Jacobson predicts Real GDP will recover to 3.0 percent growth in the fourth quarter, setting the stage for a rebound in the office furniture industry, which typically lags a recovery in the national economy.

Subscribe to our News Page

Enter your email here and we will tell you when this page is updated.

 

 

moreLatest News

Friday 23 June 2017 Trump 'has spent $133,000 on White House furnishings in his first five months in office

President Donald Trump has spent more taxpayer funds on White House furnishings in the first five mo

Wednesday 7 June 2017 HNI appoints Lorenger president, Office Furniture

MUSCATINE, Iowa - HNI Corp. has appointed Jeff Lorenger to president of its Office Furniture segmen

Monday 5 June 2017 Leeds Firm Helps Save Jobs at Office Furniture Maker

Restructuring specialists from Leeds have helped safeguard a future for a £6m-turnover Oxfordshire

Sunday 28 May 2017 Steelcase's new seating aims to make hospital rooms more comfortable

GRAND RAPIDS, MI -- Patients often want their family members in their hospital rooms. Research sh

Contact Us

JSA Consultancy Services
4-5 Gray’s Inn Square, Gray’s Inn,
London, WC1R 5AH, England


+44 (0) 20 7670 1510