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Turnover decline in furniture industry continues

25.06.2020 − 

Turnover development in the German furniture industry, which had already been declining in January and February, continued at a slightly slower pace in March. According to figures of the Federal Statistics Office (Wiesbaden) compiled by the Verband der Deutschen Möbelindustrie (VDM), at €1.562bn total turnover was 1.7% below the preceding year’s figure. While exports had developed even better than domestic business in the first two months of the year, the situation reversed again in March. At €1.086bn, domestic sales fell short of the preceding year’s figure by just 0.1%. Export turnover, by contrast, fell by 5.2% to €475.4m. In January, total turnover declined by 1.9% to €1.409bn, while February was even weaker vis à vis the preceding year with a decline of 4.3% to €1.458bn. Over the first three months, both total turnover and domestic and export turnover rose relatively evenly from month to month.

Of the individual subdivisions, the kitchen furniture industry again performed best. As in January (+4.5% to €415.3m) and February (+2.6% to €417.1m), March closed with a growth in turnover (+6.0% to €454.5m). Exports developed increasingly weakly over the first three months (Jan.: +8.5% to €171.3m, Feb.: +4.7% to €169.7m, March: +0.5% to €173.8m). By contrast, the increase in domestic turnover in March (+9.8% to €280.7m) was significantly higher than the rather restrained development in January (+1.8% to €244.0m) and February (+1.2% to €247.4m).

In January, all other subdivisions experienced a decline in turnover. In February, in addition to the kitchen furniture industry, only the upholstered furniture manufacturers were able to record an increase in turnover, of 3.0% to €83.9m, which was attributable to domestic business. In March, however, only the manufacturers of shop/contract furniture were slightly above the preceding year’s figures, due to significantly better export business.

Accumulated over the first three months, furniture sector turnover dropped by 2.6% to €4.429bn. The differences between domestic sales (-2.6% to €3.034bn) and exports (-2.7% to €1.395bn) in the individual months balanced each other out over the entire first quarter.

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