SCHAUMBURG, IL -- The American Hardware Manufacturers Association's AHMA Home Improvement Industry Confidence Index's Current Situation Index improved in September to 237.5 from 229.2 in August (October 2008 = 100), while the Future Expectations Index declined slightly to 187.9 from 193.1.
In comparing current sales levels to year-ago levels, 57 percent of respondents said sales were higher in September versus year-ago levels, up from 55 percent in August. For September, 21 percent reported sales were even, and 21 percent said sales were below year-ago levels.
Looking forward six months, 50 percent of September respondents said they expect sales to be above current levels, up from 48 percent in August. In September, 46 percent of respondents said they expect sales to be even in six months and four percent expect sales to be below current levels.
Looking forward one year, 59 percent of respondents project sales will be higher, down from 64 percent who felt that way in August. Forty-one percent of September respondents project sales will be even one year from now and zero percent project sales will be below current levels.
Timothy S. Farrell, President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Hardware Manufacturers Association (AHMA), said: "September marks the third consecutive month wherein our members have reported higher sales than the preceding month. However, it also marks the third consecutive month where they have forecast future sales to be either flat or even with current levels. Unfortunately, current political leadership in the country is failing to produce the economic confidence level required to motivate business investment."