Affluent consumers spent more on luxury home furnishings and decor in the first half of 2009, according to the latest tracking study of affluent luxury consumer purchases conducted by Unity Marketing. The survey found that the average amount spent on home luxuries rose 17.6 percent from first quarter 2009 to second quarter. This followed a rise of 16.3 percent from fourth quarter 2008 to first quarter 2009. Where they are spending this money, however, is changing: this year affluents spent less of their furniture budgets in specialty home furnishings retailers and department stores and more in warehouse clubs and discount outlets, according to Unity Marketing. Kitchenware, tabletop, and furniture, lamps and wall coverings were some of the fastest growing categories between first and second quarter; compared to second quarter 2008, fastest growing categories include art and antiques, kitchen appliances, and furniture, lamps and floor coverings. Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing, said, "Home furnishings marketers and retailers took a terrible hit in this recession. But the last two quarters of Unity's tracking study indicates the luxury home furnishings market is recovering. Now is the time for marketers to get aggressive and develop strategic plans that will help them take advantage of the new marketing opportunities.”
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