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NHS hosts preview show in NYC

BY HBSDEALER Staff

New York The National Hardware Show held its preview party Nov. 29 in New York City.

The event, which hosted about 22 vendors, was a chance for members of the media to get a small taste of what the 2008 show has in store.

“It’s a really small little sampling of what you’ll see at the show,” said Beth Blake, public relations director for the NHS. “We had 22 companies all showcasing their newest products, anything from lawn and garden to housewares to hardlines … anything to enhance the home.”

According to Blake, green will be a major trend at the 2008 show. “I think green will be a big big emphasis” she said. “I think every product will have a twist on green.”

“We’ll also see a lot of innovation in respect to existing tools,” said Blake. “We’ll see a lot of ergonomic tools, things for baby boomers who are older and stay in their homes more.”

As with all shows, manufacturers are looking forward to feature their new products. Blake spoke to that as well.

“We have an inventors spotlight area. We’re featuring manufacturers who don’t yet have a patent, so these are products that are looking for retail distribution.”

The 2008 National Hardware Show and Home and Garden World will be held in Las Vegas, May 6 to 8.

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Palfinger names eastern sales manager

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Palfinger North America has named a new eastern sales manager for Crayler truck-mounted forklifts, the Niagara Falls, Ontario-based company announced Nov. 29.

Tom Zwickle brings to the company more than 10 years experience in the area of truck-mounted forklifts and equipment. He joins Palfinger’s expanding North American sales force and will provide eastern markets with the support and service needed to continue to grow in this expanding market, the company said.

Zwickle will be based in Wilton, N.Y.

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Indianapolis remains most affordable housing market

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Indianapolis remained the most affordable major U.S. housing market for the ninth consecutive time in the third quarter of 2007, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI), released Nov. 27.

Meanwhile, nationwide housing affordability rose on a year-over-year basis but was down slightly for the quarter due to higher mortgage rates.

“Today’s HOI reading indicates that 42 percent of all new and existing homes that were sold during the third quarter were affordable to families earning the national median income of $59,000,” said NAHB president Brian Catalde, a home builder from El Segundo, Calif. “This reflects a slight improvement in affordability from a year ago, when only 40.4 percent of homes were within reach of median income-earners, but is just below the 43.1 percent of homes that were affordable to median income-earners in this year’s second quarter.”

The HOI indicates that the national weighted interest rate on fixed and adjustable-rate mortgages — a key component in calculating the HOI — was 6.73 percent in the third quarter, compared to 6.44 percent in the second quarter.

In the nation’s most affordable major housing market of Indianapolis, 87.5 percent of homes sold in the third quarter were affordable to families earning the area’s median household income of $63,800. Also near the top of the list for affordable major metros this quarter were Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich.; Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, Ohio-Pa.; Scranton-Wilkes-Barre, Pa.; and Grand Rapids-Wyoming, Mich.

On the flip side, Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif., was the nation’s least-affordable major housing market for the 12th consecutive quarter. Just 3.7 percent of new and existing homes in that area sold during the third quarter were affordable to those earning the area’s median family income of $61,700.

Other major metros at the bottom of the housing affordability chart included Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, Calif.; San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, Calif.; New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.-N.J.; and Nassau-Suffolk, N.Y.

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