When it comes to average annual furniture purchases, households making $150,000 and over are spending exponentially more than lower income households. With an average annual expenditure of $1,311 in 2013Q2, the $150,000 and over group (just 9.5% of the total furniture buying population) is spending almost double those households making between $100,000 to $149,000.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, “Consumer Expenditure Survey” and Impact Consulting model.
Looking at growth patterns for Prime Furniture Purchasing Income Groups between 2000 and 2012, the trends are pretty clear. Household growth lies squarely in the higher end. The number of households with incomes over $75,000 is up 62%, while the number of households making under $75,000 has a flat growth of 0.3%.
Households making over $150,000 saw by far the highest jump in overall population (a cumulative growth rate of 133%). Households making between $75,000 and $150,000 also saw double-digit population growth - rising more than 26%.
The remaining lower income groups all declined from 2000 to 2012. These households dropped from 75% of the total furniture buying population in 2000 to 67% in 2012.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey.
While the third quarter of 2013 experienced its traditional jump in sales, likewise the fourth quarter experienced its traditional – down -14.8%. Although the Bedding Industry did decline over last quarter, it is up 4.7% over 2012Q4. Year-to-date, sales are up 2.42%.
Combined Furniture and Bedding sales for 2013 (YTD) are up 2.4% over the same period last year. Furniture (excluding Bedding) is up 2.36% and bedding is up 2.42%.
The chart above shows the performance quarter to quarter for 2011 through the fourth quarter of 2013.
While Industry Sales continued to increase slowly quarter by quarter in 2013, combined Furniture and Bedding showed good growth over the poor performance of Q4 last year. Q4 to Q4 sales rose 8.3% .
Furniture (excluding Bedding) increased 8.8%, while Bedding grew 4.7% quarter to quarter (2012Q4 to 2013Q4).
Industry Growth : Bedding Industry - 2011 to 2013 Q4
The chart above shows the performance quarter-to-quarter for 2011 through the fourth quarter of 2013. While the Bedding Industry declined (-14.8)% over the third quarter in 2013, sales are up 4.7% over the fourth quarter of 2012. Overall, the Bedding Industry has shown positive growth in 2013 – up 2.42% from the previous year.
Industry Sales by Quarter 2008 Q1 to 2013 Q4
The Industry is at its highest one-quarter level since 2007 with overall Furniture and Bedding sales totaling $19.42 Billion. Fourth quarter sales were essentially flat compared to the preceding quarter 3 showing a slight increase of 0.2%. Combined Furniture and Bedding jumped 8.3% over the same 4th quarter of last year.
Furniture (excluding Bedding) increased 8.8% over 2012Q4 and 2.8% over quarter 3 of this year. Although Bedding did have a sharp decline of (-14.8)% growth compared to 2013Q3, it is up 4.7% from quarter 4 of 2012. Year-to-date, both Furniture and Bedding sales are up 2.4%.
Source: U.S. Department of Commerce, “Current
Population Report Projections” and Impact Consulting Services model.
Based on current population projections, Households in the Age Segment
55 to 64 will continue to increase at a staggering rate. With an estimated rise of 77% from 2000 to
2020, Ages 55 to 64 will make up the vast majority of the furniture buying
population. While Ages 25 to 34 are
projected to rise 15% over the 20 year span,
Ages 35 to 44 (considered the prime furniture purchasers) are estimated
to fall (-7.5%) with Age Group 45 to 54 finishing flat at a 0% growth in 2020. In 2020,
Age Segment 55 to 64 is projected to make up 19% of the furniture buying
population, while the three younger generations will each be responsible for
Prime Furniture Purchasing Age Groups Average Annual Furniture Expenditures (Households) by Age Segment in Selected Years 2002 to 2013 Q2
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Current Expenditure Survey”
After the recession bottomed out in 2009, expenditures in most age segments have been steadily rising to meet or surpass the average annual furniture purchases of 2002. However, only one age group in 2012 has surpassed spending levels in 2005, the 45 to 54 age group.
Ages 25 to 34: This young group is the smallest of the furniture buying population (as shown in Factoid 1 of this series), but still spent on average $431 per household in 2012. This group was the least sensitive in its spending habits during the recession compared to the older households.
Ages 35 to 44: Although in a population decline (as shown in Factoid 1 of this series), this group has traditionally spent the most per household on furniture and continues to do so with an increase of 35% from 2009. In 2012 the average household in this age group spent $527 annually.
Ages 45 to 54: Now the most populated of the segments (as shown in Factoid 1 of this series) these middle-aged households spent the second highest amount per household on furniture at $423 and is the only group to surpass 2005 spending levels.
Ages 55 to 64: While leading the growth in the furniture buying population, these Baby Boomers have been less inclined to spend money on furniture, increasing only 15% in average dollars spent from 2009. Average expenditures are still down (-22%) from 2002 at $378 per household. This fast-growing group spent 28% less per household on furniture than the 35 to 44 group in 2012.
Prime Furniture Purchasing Age Groups Average Annual Furniture Expenditures (Households) by Age Segment: 2012
Source: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Current Expenditure Survey”
Looking at the Prime Furniture Purchasing age groups, although age group 35 to 44 is declining in numbers, it continues to lead the industry with an average annual household furniture expenditure of $527 (2012 most recent data). On the flip side, age group 55 to 64 has grown dramatically in numbers (see Factoid 1 in this series), but is spending the least with an average of $378 in household furniture spending. Next week’s factoid will present the historical growth in spending by age group.
FACTOID SERIES: PRIME FURNITURE PURCHASING AGE GROUPS
The Baby Boomers (born during the 20 year period 1945 to 1964) now include all persons ages 49 to 68. This historical segment drove the record growth of the furniture industry in the 1990s through the early 2000s.
Traditionally, furniture industry purchasers (households) have been divided into four age groups: 25 to 34 years, 35 to 44, 45 to 54, and 55 to 64. As the largest block of U.S. households, the Baby Boomers (currently ages 49 to 68) have begun their exit out of their prime furniture purchasing years. As they grow older, the industry faces challenges, especially in the next 5 to 10 years, as household formations have slowed to very low growth.
The next generation to give the furniture industry the bump it needs is known as Generation Y. They are a product of the second highest birth rate in U.S. history and are currently between the ages of approximately 9 and 28. The furniture industry anxiously awaits this generation’s full arrival. In 10 years the youngest of the Baby Boomers will be nearing 60 years of age and the youngest of the Generation Y group will be almost 20.
Over the next several issues, HFB will present “Factoids” detailing relevant data on the age segments of the U.S. households and their impact on the furniture industry. The first Factoid details the historical growth of households within the age segments and graphically depicts the aging of the Boomers.
• Ages 25 to 34: The youngest age group has showed little growth since 2000 growing only 7.5% and representing 23% the furniture buying population. But that is about to change as the leading edge of the group with the second highest birth rate in U.S. history, Generation Y, starts making its way into the furniture buying population.
• Ages 35 to 44: In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the 35 to 44 age group dominated the furniture industry spurring record growth in all product categories. At its peak, this group totaled 23.2 million households, but has fallen from 30% of the furniture buying population in 2000 to 24% in 2012. This segment, traditionally the bread and butter of the furniture industry, is in sharp decline as the low birth rate generation known as the Baby Bust (those born in the early 1960s through the early 1980s) moves through this age segment’s ranks.
• Ages 45 to 54: In the mid-2000s, the glut of the Baby Boomers was in the age group 45 to 54. By 2004 this age group surpassed the younger group to become the largest household segment. Now in their prime earning years, they total 24.1 million households. The middle of this segment (age 49) is currently the last edge of the Baby Boomers. This 45 to 54 age segment peaked three years ago and began its gradual decline.
• Ages 55 to 64: Since 2000, the Baby Boomers have poured into the 55 to 64 age group. The rise in households has been rapid, growing 68% since the start of the millennium. In 2011 this group became the 2nd largest age segment. Currently it totals 24.1 million households and has grown from 18% of the furniture buying population in 2000 to 25%.