The US home laundry appliances market declined by 2% in volume terms through 2012, to reach 13 million units, however current value sales, experienced negligible growth, to reach US$6.2 billion.
The economy experienced only moderate recovery in 2012. The tepid recovery led to slower housing starts, as well as lower consumer confidence. As purchases of household appliances typically parallel an improvement in housing, products such as home laundry appliances faced a moderate decline in volume terms.
DIY and hardware stores (such as Home Depot and Lowes) continued to be the main channel for the distribution of home laundry appliances, with a 38% share of volume sales.
Department stores (such as Sears) saw a negligible decline in the distribution of home laundry appliances to 23% in 2012. Internet retailing demonstrated the biggest leap, with sales growing by 10% in volume terms compared with the previous year, and this was the fastest growth channel.
All categories in home laundry appliances saw a 2-3% increase in unit prices in 2012, due to higher raw materials costs and the residual effects of the expiration of the Energy Star rebates.
Both Electrolux and Whirlpool made announcements in early 2012 stating that increased production costs and lower demand would contribute to price rises during the year to help bolster operating income. Automatic washer dryers continued to remain twice as expensive as washing machines and dryers, retailing at around US$999.
In 2012, Whirlpool continued to be the largest manufacturer in the United States home laundry appliances market, with a 46% volume share. Sears Holding followed with a 21% share, whilst General Electric and LG Electronics were positioned with 12% and 11% volume shares, respectively.
The forecast for home laundry appliances looks promising. Volume sales are expected to increase by a CAGR of 4% to reach 16.5 million units by 2017, while value sales are expected to increase by a CAGR of 6% in constant terms to reach US$8.3 billion.
Ultimately, the expected sales will remain 6% under the volume sales experienced during the height of the housing boom. However, moderate growth will be bolstered by the economic recovery and turnaround in the housing market.
For more information on the US home laundry appliances market, see the latest research: US Home Laundry Appliances Market
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