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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.

US 3rd quarter office furniture shipments inch up 1%

Monday 9 December 2013

Amid tepid U.S. economic growth, North American shipments for office furniture makers inched up slightly in the third quarter.
Shipments for the July-to-September period totalled $2.42 billion, according to the Grand Rapids-based Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association (BIFMA). That’s up just 1 percent from the third quarter of 2012 and came after a solid 4-percent increase in the second quarter.
Through the third quarter, industry shipments in North America grew to $6.96 billion, up 1.4 percent from the first nine months of 2012.
Industry orders dipped in the third quarter by 1.5 percent to $2.27 billion after growing 4 percent and 3.3 percent in the second and first quarters, respectively.
BIFMA Executive Director Tom Reardon said it was “tough to tell what is causing” the order decline, “but if it continues it will impact shipments,”.
The third quarter volumes led to an adjustment in BIFMA’s quarterly outlook, which now sees the industry finishing 2013 with shipments of $9.4 billion, up 1.7 percent from 2012.
BIFMA’s updated outlook, expects 3.2-percent growth in shipments in 2014 to $9.7 billion. Orders are forecast to grow next year by 4 percent to $9.8 billion.
The prior quarterly outlook, issued in August, forecast shipment growth of 4.1 percent for 2013 and 3.2 percent in 2014. BIFMA updates the outlook quarterly based on economic conditions and reported sales volumes from furniture makers.

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