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FYI

business outlook

BRIEFLY.....

As the weather heats up, consumers are readying themselves for the upcoming grilling season. And, this could mean big bucks for retailers as budget conscious consumers look for sales.

According to data from Casual Living and HGTV’s exclusive 2008 Consumer Views Survey, nine out of 10 consumers own a grill. However, 75% of those consumers are expecting to replace their current grill by the year 2013. Specifically, one-fifth of responding consumers said they would replace their grill in 2009.

For retailers, in particular home improvement centers, this is a great opportunity to cash in. Data from the Casual Living and HGTV survey shows that 64% of consumers will shop a home improvement center first when looking to purchase a grill.

Consumer credit outstanding
Percent change at annual rate
Seasonally adjusted

2008 2009
Q1 Q2 Q3r Q4r Dec.r Jan.r Feb.p
r = revised; p = preliminary
Total 4.8% 3.9% 1.3% -3.0% -2.6% 3.8% -3.5%
Revolving 7.6 3.5 4.6 -6.2 -8.2 2.4 -9.7
Nonrevolving 3.1 4.2 -0.6 -1.1 0.8 4.6 0.2


Covers most short- and intermediate-term credit extended to individuals, excluding loans secured by real estate.

Nonrevolving credit includes automobile loans and all other loans not included in revolving credit, such as loans for mobile homes, education, boats, trailers or vacations. These loans may be secured or unsecured.

Source: Federal Reserve

Housing Unit numbers in thousands
Seasonally adjusted annual rate

Permits United States Northeast Midwest South West
February ’09 numbers are preliminary
Source: Bureau of the Census and National Assn. of Realtors
February ’09 547 74 82 289 102
Change from Feb. ’08 -44.2% -29.5% -36.9% -42.7% -57.9%
Starts
February ’09 583 66 84 332 101
Change from Feb. ’08 -47.3% -48.8% -45.5% -42.5% -59.1%
New home sales
February ’09 337 29 50 193 65
Change from Feb. ’08 -41.1% -25.6% -35.1% -38.5% -54.2%
Existing home sales
February ’09 4,720 740 1,040 1,740 1,200
Change from Feb. ’08 -4.6% -14.9% -14.0% -11.2% 30.4%


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