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Nov. 22, 2022

Kitchen, Bath Professionals Concerned About Market

The third quarter Kitchen & Bath Market Index (KBMI) reveals growing concern among kitchen and bath professionals about business expectations for the year ahead, based on a weaker housing market and softening sales, says the National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA). The overall index slid to 62.3 on a scale of 100 – the weakest rating in two years – from 70.4 in the second quarter. More pointedly, the ‘future conditions’ subindex fell to 55.4 from 61.8 in the previous month and plunged from 78.6 in first quarter, reflecting lingering inflation and recession fears, sagging consumer confidence, labour cost and availability, declining home sales, and continuing rate hikes. The sharp deceleration in full-year 2022 sales expectations is dampening the 2023 outlook as well. In the third quarter, respondents pulled way back to predict full-year 2022 growth of just 1.3 per cent, down from 9.4 per cent growth forecasted in the second quarter and 15.1 per cent growth expected in the first quarter. And that 1.3 per cent forecast is not real project growth; rather, it’s the result of an 11 per cent price spike and a 9.7 per cent drop in volume. Manufacturers and builders also reported a deceleration in growth, although retailers saw a small 0.6 per cent uptick.

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