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Factoids offer brief snapshots of current topics pertinent to the Furniture industry based on our on-going research. Increase your grasp of current trends, consumer attitudes, and shifts within the industry through solid statistics and concise insight.

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A Disappointing 3rd Quarter for the Furniture Industry Housing Starts Percent Growth by Quarter

This is the final factoid in a series of five factoids detailing the weakened 3rd quarter of 2016. The first quarter of 2016 in the furniture and bedding industry started off continuing the 5 percent plus growth over the previous year for all quarters in 2015. But as the year wore on, subsequent quarters did not perform to those levels. Quarter two fell to 3.7 percent growth and quarter three fell to 3.0 percent growth over quarter the same quarters of 2015. Year-end sales in 2015 totaled $92.5 billion. Third quarter year-to-date industry sales reached $71.5 billion, a 3.0 percent increase over the first three quarters last year.

The furniture industry, aside from demographics, is driven by economic influencers and catalysts – detailed in factoids two and three of this series. Continuing from the fourth factoid, this factoid expounds on the housing market and its possible correlation with the furniture industry by focusing on the quarterly growth of Housing Starts.

Despite the strong third quarter in new home sales, housing starts did not keep up the momentum. Single-family unit starts increased by only 1.9 percent from 2015 Q3 to 2016 Q3. Third quarter annualized starts totaled 759,000 single-family units. On a positive note, September starts were at the highest level since last February and the year should end with over 13 percent growth.

For multi-family units, the picture is not so bright. After a flurry of building in 2014 and 2015, starts are off significantly in the 3rd quarter of 2016. While the first quarter of 2016 experienced 5.2 percent growth, the second and third quarters have posted negative growth of 9.5 percent and 7.7 percent respectively.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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