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FYI

FYI

Briefly.....

According to Mintel's 2009 Word-of-Mouth survey, consumers rely heavily on word-of-mouth recommendations. Per the survey, 34% of consumers bought a product or service based on a recommendation from a friend and/or relative. And, outdoor retailers seem to be tuned in. Results from Casual Living's exclusive 2009 Surviving the Times survey (see page 16) reveal retailers' zest for getting consumers in their stores. Responding retailers are providing that extra boost of customer service and even going as far as to offer wine tastings.

Are you providing the best customer service and that extra oomph to bring customers in your door? If you're not sure, now's the time to re-emphasize your enthusiasm for the industry and show consumers you want their business.

Consumer credit outstanding
Percent change at annual rate
Seasonally adjusted

2008 2009
Q2 Q3 Q4r Q1r Feb.r Mar.r Apr.p
r = revised; p = preliminary
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
Total 3.9% 1.3% -3.2% -3.5% -5.1% -7.8% -7.4%
Revolving 3.5 4.6 -6.5 -8.9 -13.9 -11.2 -11.0
Nonrevolving 4.2 -0.6 -1.1 -0.3 0.2 -5.8 -5.3


Housing
Unit numbers in thousands
Seasonally adjusted annual rate

Permits United States Northeast Midwest South West
April '09 numbers are preliminary
Source: Bureau of the Census and National Assn. of Realtors
April '09 494 52 79 257 106
Change from Apr. '08 -50.2% -51.9% -49.4% -49.1% -52.3%
Starts
April '09 458 50 77 217 114
Change from Apr. '08 -54.2% -45.7% -52.5% -57.0% -52.9%
New home sales
April '09 352 19 45 212 76
Change from Apr. '08 -34.0% -52.5% -45.8% -25.4% -39.7%
Existing home sales
April '09 4,680 770 1,000 1,740 1,170
Change from Apr. '08 -3.5% -10.5% -9.9% -8.9% 19.4%


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