Housewares Manufacturers Report Sales Down in First Quarter 2011
May 26, 2011
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The International Housewares Association (IHA) quarterly survey of housewares manufacturers showed the trend turning negative in the first quarter of 2011. IHA represents both electric housewares appliances manufacturers as well as producers of cookware, cutlery, tabletop, organization, and other consume products.

IHA reported that, when asking manufacturers to compare 1Q 2011 sales to 1Q 2010 sales:
• 53% said 1Q 2011 sales were worse or much worse than in 1Q 2010
• 31% said 1Q 2011 sales were the same
• 15% said 1Q 2011 sales were better or much better

When asked what these manufacturers expected for the second quarter of 2011, the survey's (rounded) results showed that:
• 66% expect 2Q 2011 sales to be worse or much worse than in 2Q 2010
• 29% expect 2Q 2011 sales to be the same
• 6% expect 2Q 2011 sales to be better

The survey's rounded results showed that, after sales, housewares manufacturers believe the biggest 2011 challenges will be:
• 42%: variable costs (for expenses such as transportation, materials, and supplies)
• 19%: development, production, and distribution of new products
• 15%: disruptions from suppliers and end product shortages
• 13%: order commitments from retail customers
• 6%: challenges getting operating capital/financing
• 4%: fixed costs such as rent, labor, and utilities

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