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FederlegnoArredo reports:

Third quarter 2023 shows negative trends, but a positive turn expected from 2024 onwards

FederlegnoArredo, the Italian federation that represents the wood, furniture, and furnishing industries: 'We had anticipated and forecasted that the third quarter would be negative for both the wood-furniture supply chain and the two macrosystems, and now our Monitor data confirms this.'

Photo © Viorel Dudau |

'The supply chain records a -7.8% from January to September 2023 compared to the same period in 2022. Meanwhile, exports, constituting 41%, show a decline of -7.5%, and the domestic market at -8.1%. While there aren't significant variations between Italy and abroad for the supply chain, noticeable differences exist for the two macrosystems. The furniture macrosystem indicates a sales contraction of -3.3%, yet sustains the Italian market at +0.3%, but there's a substantial drop in exports (6.4%), accounting for over 51%. The wood macrosystem averages a decline of 14.5%, with a more pronounced negative trend in the domestic market at -15.6%, and although in double digits, a more moderate decrease in exports, constituting 27%, at -11.4%.'

Claudio Feltrin, President of FederlegnoArredo, commented on the Monitor's findings conducted by the FederlegnoArredo Study Centre, covering a representative sample of companies accounting for 18% of the turnover, roughly 10 billion out of the total 56.5 billion in the supply chain. The wood-furniture sector is heading towards the close of a challenging year, expected to conclude at an overall -7%, according to FederlegnoArredo's Monitor, with exports at -7.2% and the domestic market at -6.8%. The furniture macrosystem's decline should be more contained (-3.7%) with a limited worsening in the domestic market (-0.9%), while the foreign market stands at -6%.

'We are now anticipating a period of stabilisation and normalisation amidst an unstable international context, hostile to business and markets. However, our Monitor hints at a glimmer of positivity, with 2024 potentially marking a return to positive trends for the supply chain with a +2%, Italy at -0.7%, and exports projected to grow by 6.8%. This breath of fresh air alleviates the difficulties faced in '23 with traditional markets - starting from Germany and the United States - experiencing significant challenges, along with conflict zones and China. Contrary to the trend, the Middle East, primarily Saudi Arabia, shows promise with a confirmed +4.6% in the MSA from January to August, along with the United Arab Emirates and India. For the furniture macrosystem, an overall +5% is expected, with a more positive trend for overseas markets (+7.5%) compared to Italy, still positive at +3.2%. The upcoming Salone del Mobile in April 2024 will provide our companies with an opportunity to gauge how they have interpreted the continuous changes in scenarios, allowing them to meet buyers from around the world, engage with diverse markets, and lay the groundwork for investments in 2025,' concluded Feltrin.

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