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UK:Demand For Furniture to Grow
|News From the UK
Survey on timber windows
In the UK, the British Woodworking Federation has carried out an investigation which reveals that 74% of those looking to use timber windows would choose fully factory finished and glazed timber windows. The research, based on a sample of architects, surveyors, building control officers, local authorities, housing associations and builders, revealed that 72% of them would be prepared to pay 10-20% more for a BWF accredited timber window (57% in 2001). 47% think that BWF-accredited timber windows are as easily maintained as windows made from other materials.
Weak demand for wood machinery
In the UK, even if some companies are reporting a good level of sales, demand for woodworking machinery has generally weakened in the second quarter of 2002. Enquiries are above average in many firms but actual buyers are hard to find. Machinery firms have had to branch out to supply equipment to other sectors.
Demand for furniture to grow
In the UK, demand for domestic furniture (+ 6,5% in 2001) increased by 8.7% in the first quarter of 2002, compared with the same period of 2001. The value of the household spending grew by 5.7%. Market analyst Consumer Futures predicts an increase (in value) in demand for furniture and furnishings of 5.6%, 3.3% and 5.7% in 2002, 2003 and 2004 respectively.
Furniture defies general retail slowdown
UK furniture and floor covering retailers defied a general slowdown in retail sales in August. Overall retail sales growth was at its slowest since October 2000 however a balance of 32% of retailers reported annual sales volume growth, according to the CBI Distributive Trades Survey. The increase was in contrast to overall retail sales, which slowed sharply. The survey found sales growth at its weakest since October 2000, with expectations for the year at a two year low. A balance of just 5% of stores said sales were higher than a year ago. Sales were reported to be below average for the time of year for the first time since December 2000. This led the CBI to claim that a slowdown in retail spending has set in.
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