COLUMBUS, Ohio — Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) has released its monthly TRENDS report showing average sales for HARDI distributor members increased by 6.2 percent in July 2016.

The average annualized growth for the 12 months through July 2016 was 7 percent. This annual growth rate has generally remained within the 6 percent to 7 percent range for most of the past two years.

“The summer heat may have been slow to arrive but it has packed a punch this season,” said HARDI Market Research & Benchmarking Analyst Brian Loftus. “There were 14.9 percent more cooling degree days this year versus July 2015. Sales growth would have been even better, except the prior year had two more billing days."

“Housing starts in the 12 months through July are up 8.5 percent versus that same period one year ago,” said HARDI Senior Economist Connor Lokar. “Residential activity is a leading indicator for the U.S. economy. The fact that these trends are gaining momentum bodes well for the economy looking into 2017.”

The days sales outstanding (DSO), a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, is now 45.4. “The DSO ticked up unexpectedly last month,” said Loftus. “The indicator is back to a level comparable to recent years, so the June reading was probably an anomaly.”

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. For more information, visit