Sales for HARDI distributor members increased by increased by 4.4% in January, according to the monthly TRENDS report. The average annualized growth for the 12 months through January 2019 is 10.4%.
“January and February are the slowest months of the year for HARDI distributors,” said HARDI Market Research & Benchmarking Analyst Brian Loftus. “This year got off to a 4.4% start which looks pretty good when you realize it is being compared to a month that had a 19.4% gain.” So members were busy last January and were busier this year.
“January sales growth came in lower than what we’ve grown accustomed to seeing over the last 6 months, but given the difficult comps, a positive growth rate is a great outcome,” said HARDI Economist Paul Hallmann. “Comps will soften up for the next few months before trending towards double digits as we enter the summer months.”
The Days Sales Outstanding (DSO), a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, is now at 48.5 days. “The past few years the DSO has remained in a fairly consistent annual pattern,” said Loftus. “January was a day longer than January of 2018 which was a day longer than 2017. It looks like another tile in the ‘slowing economy’ mosaic.”