Small-Appliance Industry Softens

By Peter Strozniak Demand for small appliances in the U.S. this year is expected to decrease by 3.8% or $5.4 billion, according to a research report compiled by CIT, a New York-based diversified finance company. But the report predicts demand for small appliance, namely electric household kitchen and bathroom appliances, will increase by 4.8% or $5.7 billion in 2002. "Behind this rebound will be a pickup in economic activity in response to what we believe will be a series of Fed interest rate cuts," says the report. The report also says that China expanded its market share of imported small appliances last year by an estimated 20% or $2.28 billion, which accounts for 56% share of small appliance imports. China is the No. 1 importer of small appliances, followed by Mexico and Taiwan, second and third, respectively.

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