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Global demand for flooring to rise

BY Brae Canlen

Worldwide demand for flooring and carpets is forecast to rise 4.9% annually through 2016, according to a study by the Freedonia Group, a Cleveland-based industry market research firm. This will be an improvement from the rate during the 2006-2011 period, as countries rebound from the 2008 global economic crisis.

In terms of dollars, demand for floor coverings is projected to advance 6.8% per year to $270 billion. The primary driver of demand in developed areas will be rebounds in the residential construction markets of many countries, particularly the United States. In developing regions, rising building construction activity and growing per capita incomes will spur demand and allow households to afford more expensive floor coverings, the report said. Rising motor vehicle production in many areas will also boost overall demand for floor coverings. 

The Asia/Pacific region is forecast to see the fastest gains in floor covering demand, driven by the rapid industrialization of many countries in this region and rising personal incomes. China alone is projected to account for more than one-third of all new demand generated through 2016, strengthening its position as the largest market for flooring and carpets in the world. North America is expected to see the second fastest gains in flooring and carpet demand, driven by an expected rebound in the U.S. housing market.  Gains in developed areas such as Western Europe, Australia and Japan will not be as strong as those in North America or developing regions. However, a rebound in new housing construction will boost demand in many of these countries. 

Residential buildings constitute the largest market for floor coverings, accounting for 59% of sales in 2011.  Nonresidential buildings made up 35% of demand, with transportation and other markets representing the remaining 6%. Through 2016, the fastest gains in demand are expected in the nonresidential buildings market, primarily due to a rebound in nonresidential construction expenditures in countries recovering from the 2008 global financial crisis and 2009 economic downturn. Demand growth in the transportation equipment and other market will see strong gains due to rising motor vehicle production, while demand in the residential building market will see similar growth because of rebounding housing markets in many countries.

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Consumers using less energy for heating and cooling

BY Brae Canlen

The results of a survey from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a division of the Department of Energy, indicates that Americans are using less energy to heat and cool their homes.

New estimates from the most recent Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) show that 48% of energy consumption in American homes during 2009 was used for heating and cooling, down from 58% in 1993. For decades, space heating and air conditioning have accounted for more than half of all U.S. residential energy consumption.

Space heating accounted for 42% of household energy use in 2009, down from 53% in 1993. Stoves, washers/dryers and other appliances, electronics and lighting accounted for 30% of energy use, followed by water heaters at 18%, air conditioning at 6% and refrigerators at 5%.

The lower energy consumption is attributable in part to more efficient heating and cooling equipment, building practices that resulted in better insulation and more efficient windows, and population shifts to areas with warmer climates. 

To read the results of the full RECS survey, click here.

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S.Thomas says:
Feb-03-2013 03:19 pm

A well designed HVAC website
A well designed HVAC website would display variety of heating and cooling products categorically, and you may also navigate through the list of services being offered by the company. Besides this, it will help you to know about the latest discount offers on the products and services as an added facility.

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Possible Lowe’s closing has SoCal city buzzing

BY Brae Canlen

Months of speculation about a possible Lowe’s closing is causing some fiscal angst among city officials in San Marcos, Calif., according to an article in the San Diego Union-Tribune. First opened in 2004, the home improvement retailer anchors a major shopping center and pays the city $587,000 a year in lease revenues. San Marcos also collects another $82,650 in yearly “off-site maintenance” fees from the North Carolina-based chain.

Lowe’s is listed among the top 25 producers of sales tax revenues for the city, which is located 35 miles northeast of San Diego.

Natalie Turner, a Lowe’s spokeswoman, told the Union Tribune that the company would not comment on speculation. But the current San Marcos mayor, as well as a former city councilman, said they were aware of the rumors and the topic has come under discussion among civic leaders.

“They (city officials) know that there’s going to come a moment when Lowe’s is going to leave,” said Steve Kildoo, who heads the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce. He described the potential store closing as “not one off the better kept secrets” in town.

Sales at the San Marcos store have reportedly lagged from delayed road construction that would have linked Lowe’s to a master planned community of 7.000 people. These homeowners began traveling to retail outlets in coastal towns, establishing shopping patterns that continue to this day, according to the newspaper report.

Several Lowe’s stores have opened in other towns north of San Diego, and a new Lowe’s is under construction in Carlsbad, a wealthy enclave on the northern coast of San Diego County.

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