HIGH POINT — U.S. residential furniture factory orders grew 8% in August compared to the same period last year, Smith Leonard reported. Year-to-date new orders also showed growth for the second consecutive year, up 5% over 2011 figures.

"Last year, new orders were up 6% year to date over 2010, so overall we are slowly digging out of the hole we have been in," Ken Smith, managing director, said in his monthly Furniture Insights newsletter.

According to the accounting and consulting firm, approximately 65% of survey participants reported an increase in their year-to-date orders, with a good number reporting double-digit increases.

Factory shipments also increased, up 6% over August 2011, with year-to-date figures up 8%.

“On the national front, consumer confidence continues to gradually improve. And housing, from existing home sales to new houses, continues to improve. Prices are generally going up and inventories are down. And per our survey results, these are the two keys to the furniture business,” Smith said.


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