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Trade Group Expects Subtle Growth For Furniture Retail

By Home Furnishings Business in on January 2006 Despite a forecast predicting an increase of 4.7 percent in overall retail sales over last year, the National Retail Federation said this week that it expects furniture stores will lose some momentum in 2006.

A retail sales forecast released Monday by the NRF, the world's largest retail trade association, predicts home furnishings stores, along with building-related outlets, will see less demand for product as the housing market begins to soften in the coming year.

According to the quarterly report, higher energy costs will also lead to more conservative spending in the first quarter of the new year.

Last year, the NRF originally predicted a 5.6 percent jump in sales for 2005, when the actual increase hit 6.1 percent.

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