An updated office furniture industry outlook by the American Business + Institutional Furniture Manufacturers’ Association, BIFMA, shows business picking up in 2013 after starting the year down a bit.
The quarterly outlook now projects North American shipments to grow 4.1 percent in 2013 to $9.6 billion. That’s an upgrade from the previous quarterly outlook issued in June that forecast shipment growth of 2.1 percent for the year.
The new outlook, however, does slightly lessen expectations for 2014, although it still projects solid 6.1-percent growth in North American shipments for the industry to $10.2 billion. The previous outlook three months ago projected 7.2-percent shipment growth next year.
Industrywide, shipments in the second quarter grew 5 percent from the same period a year earlier to $2.32 billion. Orders increased 4 percent to $2.47 billion.
The second quarter growth reversed a small year-to-year decline of 1.6 percent in shipments in the first quarter to $2.10 billion.
In 2012, shipments for the office furniture industry dipped 1.1 percent to $9.2 billion.