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FYI

The tip-off to the official start of the grilling season (May through September) is just around the corner.

Briefly.....

The tip-off to the official start of the grilling season (May through September) is just around the corner

According to a recent study conducted by the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Assn., 56% of consumers consider Memorial Day one of the most popular grilling holidays of the year. However, holidays are not the only times consumers are firing up the grill. The Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Assn. found nearly three-fifths of grill owners are using their grills year round.

Findings from Casual Living’s 2007 exclusive Consumer Buying Trends Survey of consumers with incomes of $75,000 or more reveal:

  • 65% of all grill buyers are between the ages of 35 and 55.

  • Gas grills are by far the most popular, bought by 79%, followed by charcoal grills, bought by 16%.

Consumer credit outstanding
Percent change at annual rate
Seasonally adjusted

2007 2008
Q1r Q2r Q3r Q4r Dec.r Jan.r Feb.p
r = revised; p = preliminary
Total 4.7% 5.6% 8.2% 4.0% 1.0% 4.9% 2.4%
Revolving 5.4 6.8 8.6 8.6 2.8 7.1 5.9
Nonrevolving 4.4 4.9 7.9 1.2 0.0 3.6 0.4


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 ’08 numbers are preliminary
Source: Bureau of the Census and National Assn. of Realtors
February ’08 978 103 142 503 230
Change from Feb. ’07 -36.5% -26.4% -32.7% -34.9% -44.8%
Starts
February ’08 1,065 102 159 555 249
Change from Feb. ’07 -28.4% -23.9% -2.5% -30.5% -36.5%
New home sales
February ’08 590 37 73 333 147
Change from Feb. ’07 -29.8% -19.6% -42.5% -27.9% -28.3%
Existing home sales
February ’08 5,030 890 1,240 1,990 920
Change from Feb. ’07 -23.8% -26.4% -19.5% -22.0% -29.2%


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