SCHAUMBURG, IL -- The American Hardware Manufacturers Association's AHMA Home Improvement Industry Confidence Index's Current Situation Index improved in December to 260.4 from 208.3 in November, while the Future Expectations Index fell to 161.7 from 195.9.
In comparing current sales levels to year-ago levels, 63 percent of respondents said sales were higher in December versus year-ago levels, up from 50 percent in November. For December, six percent reported sales were even, and 31 percent said sales were below year-ago levels.
Looking forward six months, 37 percent of December respondents said they expect sales to be above current levels, down from 55 percent in November. In December, 37 percent of respondents said they expect sales to be even in six months and 25 percent expect sales to be below current levels.
Looking forward one year, 56 percent of respondents project sales will be higher, down from 59 percent who felt that way in November. Twenty-five percent of December respondents project sales will be even one year from now and 19 percent project sales will be below current levels.
Timothy S. Farrell, President and Chief Executive Officer of the American Hardware Manufacturers Association (AHMA), said: "The mood of our members is understandably subdued going into 2013 as they feel restrained from making investment and hiring decisions due to the lack of a clear tax and economic policy coming out of Washington. It continues to be our hope that legislators will enact long-term, pro-growth solutions to the nation's fiscal problems."