August furniture orders down 34% compared to August 2021

Meanwhile, furniture shipments rose 9% in August compared to the same month a year ago

HIGH POINT —  Net new orders were down 34% in August compared to August 2021, according to the latest Furniture Insights survey of residential furniture manufacturers published by Smith Leonard.

According to the survey, new orders in August totaled $2.02 billion, compared to $3.1 billion in August. 2021 a 34% decrease. These numbers were down for 84% of the participants.

New orders, however rose 9.5% to $2.02 billion in August, from $1.8 billion in July.

Year-to-date, orders were down 29% for the first eight months of the year compared to the same period in 2021, although year-to-date orders in August 2021 were up 29% compared to the first eight months of 2020. During the first eight months of 2022, orders were $17.9 billion, compared to $25.3 billion during the same eight-month period in 2021. Some 91% of those surveyed said orders were down year to date.

The report also noted that the new orders cited are net of cancellations and are also likely affected by “some clean-up of backlogs since backlogs are usually not part of the accounting systems.”

Shipments rose 9% from $2.7 billion in August 2021 to $2.9 billion in August 2022. These numbers were up for 72% of the participants.

Year-to-date shipments rose 6% to $23.5 billion, from $22.2 billion the first eight months of 2021. They were up for 70% of the participants.

From July to August 2022, shipments rose 14.5% to $2.9 billion, from $2.5 billion.

“Once again, as shipments dollars exceeded net new orders, backlogs fell again down 35% from last year and down 11% from July,” the report said. “Hopefully, many participants are focusing on backlogs as getting a good handle on them is really important as we go through this recession or slow down and depend on backlogs to keep business going from a shipping perspective.”

The report also noted that inventories remain high, up 37% from last August and up from 29% reported in July.

“We realize it is hard to cut off the supply chain especially when both products and materials have been hard to get, but hopefully these levels will drift down some as business continues to get back in line with whatever the new normal will be,” the report said.

Meanwhile, receivables rose 3% over last year and were up 3% from July.

“Hopefully all are keeping customer’s balances from getting aged out as business slows a bit at retail,” the report said.

Thomas Russell

Home News Now Editor-in-Chief Thomas Russell has covered the furniture industry for 25 years at various daily and weekly consumer and trade publications. He can be reached at and at 336-508-4616.

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