SOURCE: Freedonia Group

August 24, 2005 09:56 ET

US Carpet & Rug Demand to Exceed 20 Billion Square Feet in 2009

CLEVELAND, OH -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 24, 2005 -- The US market for carpets and rugs is projected to rise only 1.6 percent per year through 2009 to over 22 billion square feet, but will still account for 65 percent of the floor covering market. Demand will be supported by an acceleration in nonresidential construction activity. Additionally, expansion of distribution channels, product innovations and improved material technology will aid growth. However, carpet and rug demand is forecast to decelerate from the 1999 to 2004 period, due to a decline in new residential construction spending. In addition, carpet demand will be restrained by ongoing consumer interest in hard surface flooring, especially laminates, ceramic tile and wood. Rugs will benefit from this consumer preference, as scatter and area rug products are often used in combination with hard surface flooring. These and other trends are presented in "Carpets & Rugs," a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industrial market research firm.

Through 2009, the US carpet and rug market will continue to be dominated by tufted products. However, this segment will continue to face strong competition from hard surface flooring. Despite this competition, two product types of tufted carpets and rugs -- scatter rugs and bath mats, and modular carpet tile -- will post solid gains. Rugs will benefit from the growing popularity of hard surface flooring, while carpet tiles will see accelerating growth based on their penetration into the residential market and a rebound in nonresidential construction activity. Woven carpets and rugs will see faster gains than their tufted counterparts through 2009. This segment will be bolstered by increasing interest in high-end woven rugs, which are often used to complement hard surface flooring.

The nonresidential building market is expected to provide the best opportunities for carpets and rugs, with demand rising 3.2 percent per year through 2009 to 6.1 billion square feet. Gains will be driven by a significant recovery in nonresidential building construction spending through 2009 from the depressed levels seen in the 1999 to 2004 period. Additionally, new demand will be supported by steady growth in floor space. Gains in the residential segment will decelerate, driven by a decline in the new single-family residential market due to a fall in single-family housing completions.

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