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The Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) has released its monthly TRENDS report, showing the average sales performance by HARDI distributors was an increase of 33.5 percent during May 2021.
“The 33.5 percent gain reflects stimulus-driven demand being compared against a sales decline of -10.2 percent after the May 2020 COVID interruptions," said HARDI Market Research and Benchmarking Analyst Brian Loftus. "The sales growth is nearly 20 percent versus May 2019, and about 11 percent if we adjust for inflation. This is the end of the unusually weak shutdown-related sales comps."
The Days Sales Outstanding (DSO), a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, was 40 days at the end of May 2021. “The DSO has been faster than normal since June 2020 due to the aggressive policies to support the economy during the COVID related disruptions,” Loftus said. “The normal rate of DSO for May is 46 to 47 days.”
The 17.6 percent average annual sales growth for the twelve months through May 2021 is a record for HARDI distributors. “This unusually large gain is primarily due to being compared to the unusually low level of sales during the prior year when lockdowns interfered with sales activities,” Loftus said. “The economy continues to benefit from the stimulus dollars dispersed to vaccinate us against an extended recession, but this is likely the peak annual sales rate.”
HARDI members do not receive financial compensation in exchange for their monthly sales data and can discontinue their participation without prior notice or penalty. Participation is voluntary, and the depth of market coverage varies from region to region. An independent entity collects and compiles the data that can include products not directly associated with the HVACR industry.