HIGH POINT, NC - New orders for residential furniture climbed 4% in July compared to July 2011 keeping pace with year-to-date new orders which are also up 4%, according to accounting firm Smith Leonard's monthly survey.
Sixty-five percent of U.S. furniture makers and distributors participating in the Smith Leonard survey reported taking increased orders in July.
Furniture shipments increased 3% in July; total shipments for the first seven months are running 8% of the same time frame of a year ago, Smith Leonard said. Approximately 68% of respondents reported increased shipments for the seven months of 2012 compared to January-July of 2011.
"From what we have gathered, we do not expect the August results to be significantly different than the last few months - really since March if you ignore the spikes and valleys around (High Point) Market dates," Smith Leonard notes in its September Furniture Insights newsletter. "On the good news side, consumer confidence improved in September moving up to 70.3, up from 61.3. This was almost back to February 2012 levels when business was clearly better. Also, housing continues to show improvement with very nice gains in both existing and home sales and housing starts, pretty much across the country."
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