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Sales for HARDI distributor members increased by 12.1 percent in September, according to the monthly TRENDS report. The average annualized growth for the 12 months through September was 9.8 percent.
“September was another strong month and for the same reasons as August, warmer than normal temperatures against a weak prior year,” said HARDI Market Research & Benchmarking Analyst Brian Loftus. “The 9.8 percent annual sales growth is the best annual pace since eight years ago when we began to move beyond the Great Recession.”
“September saw HARDI members enjoy beneficial weather and robust economic conditions,” said HARDI Economist Paul Hallmann. “Based on initial estimates, the US economy grew at an annualized rate of 3.5 percent in Q3. Unemployment remains at 3.7 percent, a 49-year low, and consumer confidence reached an 18-year high. HARDI members should prepare for more strong economic growth early in 2019 before things start to cool down by year end.”
Days Sales Outstanding (DSO), a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, spiked up with the strong sales this past spring. “The DSO is unusually high this month but that happens after unusually busy months like September or May of this year,” said Loftus. “One month is not a trend and this spike is explainable, if it corrects with the next report.”