HIRI takes second look at economic forecast

The Interim Report on the Economic Outlook and the Home Improvement Products Market for May 2011 lowered some forecasts for key metrics, raised others and maintained its core forecast.

The report, conducted for the Home Improvement Research Institute by IHS Global Insight, downwardly revised its 2011 housing starts forecast to 630,000. The February forecast had called for 680,000 starts in 2011. The 2012 forecast was also lowered from 1.10 million to 1.02 million.

Despite the lowered forecasts, recovery efforts from major storms will boost sales in 2011, according to IHS. Also, the existing-home sales forecast for 2011 was raised by IHS to 5.25 million, up from 5.06 million. 

"We have not altered our basic view that 2011 will be a year of modest growth for home improvement product sales."

Also lowered was the forecast for GDP growth -- from 3.2% to 2.9%.

HIRI is the industry’s leading source for original research. It is an independent, not-for-profit membership organization comprised of more than 80 forward-thinking companies.

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