Columbus, Ohio - Heating, Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) released their monthly TRENDS report. The average sales growth for reporting HVACR distributor members increased by 8.8% in February 2014. The annualized growth was in the 5% to 6% range from the spring of 2013 until late in the year. With the 6.4% annualized growth achieved through February 2014, the upper end of that range has been breached for the third consecutive month.
February 2014 and 2013 each had 20 billing days, but the weather in February was challenging once again in many parts of the country. HARDI Market Research and Benchmarking analyst Brian Loftus said, “The February performance is similar to what occurred in January. The growth this year was healthy despite challenging conditions and a good prior year.” The good results were widely dispersed across the seven reporting regions.
HARDI Senior Economist Andrew Duguay observed, “Consumers were not as phased by the cold weather. Inflation Adjusted Retail Sales for February came in 2.3% higher than last year. Our data on the remodeling market is also up year-over-year, looking more like the positive retail numbers than the softer housing numbers. From a macroeconomic standpoint, replacement work is likely going to be a relatively key driver of sales in the months to come as new building activity levels plateau.”
The Days Sales Outstanding, a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, remained at the 50 day level reported in January. This is a couple days quicker than the pace last year at this time.
HARDI members do not receive financial compensation in exchange for their
monthly sales data and can discontinue their participation without prior notice or penalty. Participation is voluntary, and the depth of market coverage varies from region to region. An independent entity collects and compiles the data that can include products not directly associated with the HVACR industry.