B2B Sales Drop in November – NKBA


B2B Sales Drop in November

By Manuel Gutierrez, Consulting Economist to NKBA

Sales at wholesale level fell by 0.6 percent in November to $694 billion. This was the first sizable drop after three months of relative stability. November highlights, including certain categories of durable goods relevant to the remodeling industry, follow:

  • Compared to November 2021, wholesale sales are 8.7 percent higher, despite actual gains declining steadily in the last year. In January 2022, wholesale volume had increased more than 20 percent from January 2021.
  • November’s declines were concentrated on durable goods (products that typically last longer than three years). Sales for all durables combined fell 1.7 percent from October, while sales of nondurables rose marginally by 0.4 percent. For the year, however, sales of durables were $320 billion in November, up 6.4 percent from November 2021.
  • Durables include Household Appliances, which fell 2 percent from October to $69 billion, although they are 8.9 percent ahead of last year. Appliance sales have fallen in five of the last seven months.
  • Sales of Lumber and other Construction materials fell 2.7 percent to $21 billion in November. Sales have fallen since the beginning of 2022, but were still 5.7 percent higher than the same time in 2021. The contraction in the new single-family housing market is clearly impacting volume.
  • Furniture and home furnishings rose 0.6 percent from October, and are 14 percent ahead YOY.
  • Nondurable sales hit $373 billion in November, up 10.7 percent YOY. Nondurable sales are normally just 3 percentage points higher than sales of durable goods, but they have been running nearly 11 percent higher since the pandemic.